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Warning issued for infant formula imported from New Zealand

(Xinhua)

08:25, October 31, 2012

BEIJING, Oct. 30 (Xinhua) -- China's consumer quality watchdog on Tuesday warned consumers to be cautious of infant formula entering the country from New Zealand.

Consumers should be careful when buying infant formula delivered from New Zealand by post to avoid safety risks and economic losses, Li Yuanping, spokesman for the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, said at a press conference.

The statement came as the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) in New Zealand announced on Sept. 28 that it will work with the New Zealand Customs Service to crack down on illegal exports of infant formula.

The MPI said that only registered exporters are allowed to export dairy products, including infant formula, as specified under the New Zealand Animal Products Act of 1999.

Companies breaking the law will be fined up to 300,000 NZ dollars (243,000 U.S. dollars), while individual violators will be subject to a maximum fine of 50,000 NZ dollars, the MPI said.

The MPI will decide whether to take legal action according to the circumstances, it said.

According to earlier media reports, MPI investigations revealed substantial growth in the amount of illegal infant formula exports in the past year, primarily to China, with unlawful trade valued at more than 150 million NZ dollars.

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