The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an import alert halting shipments of all milk products from China, a measure aimed at improving food safety and preventing melamine-contaminated products from entering the U.S. marketplace.
Under special procedures announced in Wednesday's import alert, all shippers of milk products from China will be required to present proof (i.e. lab test results) showing that the products do not containe melamine, before their shipments will be allowed to enter the U.S. According to the FDA alert, Chinese government sources "indicate contamination of milk components, especially dried milk powder, which are used in the manufacture of a variety of finished foods...dispersed throughout the Chinese food supply chain."
The Washington Post reports that melamine "is used to make plastic and fertilizer but has been added to human and animal food to boost protein readings," and that "the types of products likely to be waylaid are cookies, candies, and other goods made with milk or milk powder."