Melamine Pervades Chinese Animal Feed Industry

November 5, 2008 2:18 pm Last Updated: October 1, 2015 10:42 pm

A vendor sells eggs from Thailand at a market stall in Hong Kong. Chinese eggs are now suspect after melamine-contaminated eggs turned up in Hong Kong.    (Mike Clarke/AFP/Getty Images)
A vendor sells eggs from Thailand at a market stall in Hong Kong. Chinese eggs are now suspect after melamine-contaminated eggs turned up in Hong Kong. (Mike Clarke/AFP/Getty Images)
According to Mr. Li, an employee of a Chinese animal feed company, melamine is regularly added to many different types of animal feed in China. In an interview with NTDTV, Mr. Li said the melamine found in eggs came from contaminated chicken feed; worse cases of indirect contamination might be occurring, but not yet have been exposed.

Cow and pig feed have the highest concentrations of melamine and hormone additives, Mr. Li said. The melamine is added to boost the apparent protein content.

Mr. Li said that current Chinese food safety regulations are inadequate; supervision needs to start from the source of raw materials, such as the food oil manufacturers who sell leftover soybean solids to animal feed manufacturers.

Mr. Ren, an egg supplier from Hebei Province in northern China, has suffered severe business losses since melamine-contaminated Chinese eggs were discovered in Hong Kong. Ren feels that he is a victim in this case; he trusted the feed manufacturers, and did not knowingly sell poisoned eggs.

Mr. Ren believes that since melamine is added to chicken feed, it is most likely added top all animal feed produced in China.

According Chinese newspaper Southern China Metropolitan, the practice of mixing melamine into animal feed started at least five years ago, and affects every type of animal feed: cattle feed, sheep feed, poultry feed, pig feed and even the feed used in industrial fish farms are all contaminated.

A mainland animal feed industry staff Mr Li disclosed to New Dang Dynasty TV Station (NTDTV), melamine has been put into many animal feeds, the melamine tainted egg is the result of such kind of chicken feed, and other kind of feeds could be even worse, but just not exposed yet. Worse still the melamine is not produced for feed; it comes from industrial waste produced by unrelated industries.

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