BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s quality watchdog has launched a nationwide probe of dairy firms after it emerged that dozens of babies had developed kidney stones from drinking milk contaminated with melamine.
The results announced late on Tuesday found that 22 of 109 firms probed, or 20 percent, were found to have produced milk carrying the banned toxin, which can be added to food to make protein levels appear higher to quality testers.
The findings have sparked product recalls and apologies from a number of companies, and promises of compensation to victims.
Three babies have died, and the number of sick has risen nearly five-fold to 6,244, Chinese officials said on Wednesday. Those with “acute kidney failure” had reached 158.
Officials have warned the toll could rise further as more children are examined.
The General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine website (www.aqsiq.gov.cn) named the firms in order of the prevalence of melamine contamination found in samples of their product, as follows:
1 Shijiazhuang Sanlu Group Co
2 Shanghai Panda Dairy Co Ltd
3 Synutra International Inc
4 Shanxi Gucheng Dairy Co Ltd
5 Jiangxi Bright & Hero Dairy Co
6 Baoji Huimin Milk Co Ltd
7 Mengniu Dairy
8 Duojiaduo Dairy Industry (Tianjin) Co Ltd
9 Guangdong Yashili Group Co Ltd
10 Hunan Peiyi Dairy Co
11 Heilongjiang Qining Dairy Co
12 Shanxi Yashili Dairy Co Ltd
13 Shenzhen Jinbishi Milk Co Ltd
14 Guangzhou Shien Dairy Co
15 Guangzhou Jinding Dairy Co
16 Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group Co
17 Ausmeadow Nutriment Co Ltd
18 Qingdao Suncare Nutritional Technology Co Ltd
19 Xi‘an Baiyue Dairy Co Ltd
20 Yantai Leilei Dairy Products Co Ltd
21 Shanghai Bao‘anli Dairy Co Ltd
22 Fuding Chenguan Dairy Co Ltd
Compiled by Ian Ransom and Yu Le; Editing by Nick Macfie