Liow Tiong Lai, the Health Ministry admitted that lab testing of melamine by the Chemistry Department is too slow. Of the 866 product samples which have been taken, only 26 have been tested and found to be melamine-free. That's poor work. 26 out of 866. That's means 840 products are yet to be tested.
Whatever products listed as free of melamine are only a warranty or guarantee from the product manufacturers, not a test report from authorized and independent laboratories. Thus, consumer are still at the mercy of products quality and safety as warranted by the manufacturers and not from the Health Ministry.
More labs to be set up for testing melamine
By LISA GOH
KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry will set up its own laboratories as current melamine tests are proceeding “too slowly.”
Its minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai said that of 866 product samples which have been taken, only 26 have been tested and found to be melamine-free.
“That’s too slow. So we are going to set up labs in every state because there are a lot of samples and the (Chemistry Department) lab cannot cope.
“We don’t want the people to have to wait,” he told reporters at the Prime Minister’s Hari Raya open house at Putra World Trade Centre here on Wednesday.
The ministry will set up more than 13 labs, and will also get the aid of Universiti Sains Malaysia, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Universiti Malaya.
“These are qualified labs. They have the equipment and they have the capability,” Liow said.
He also asked the public not to panic if they found small portions of melamine in their food, as long as they were within the permissible level.
“European Union countries allow 30 parts per million (ppm) of melamine in all food products.
“When a food product is wrapped in plastic, there may be some transfer of melamine to the food. But if it’s in small amounts then it’s still safe as our bodies should be able to excrete it,” he said.
He said the melamine-tainted milk products in China were at dangerous levels of about 2,653ppm.
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