Sanlu, China’s biggest milk powder manufacturer, sold contaminated milk after farmers laced their produce with industrial chemicals to increase its protein content. Chinese hospitals are fighting to save the lives of some of the 1,253 babies who have fallen sick after they were fed milk powder contaminated with an industrial chemical used to make plastic cups and saucers. Two babies have already died from drinking the formula laced with melamine in a ploy by farmers to boost the apparent protein content of the milk that they sold to one of the best-known milk powder manufacturers in the country. Police have arrested nineteen people, including two brothers who ran a milk collection station. And, I still have not finished packing.
According to press reports:
The children are victims of two of China’s greatest evils: greed and secrecy. Greed has contributed to poor safety: only a few years ago 13 babies died after they were fed a sub-stand-ard fake formula marketed under the Sanlu brand. The determination to stage a perfect Olympic Games may also have delayed revelation of the adulterated milk powder. Twenty-one topics were banned from Chinese media during the Olympics – eighth on the list was food safety scandals.
I do not give my talk in China until next week, but I thought I would put it up here now so my friends in China can get a early preview: