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432 Chinese babies sick from bad milk powder

Image    Some 432 babies have developed kidney stones after drinking milk powder contaminated with an industrial chemical, China's health minister said yesterday, vowing to punish those responsible.
The milk powder that has left this number of mainland babies sick is not sold in Macau, local television news broadcaster TDM reported yesterday.
Some local pharmaceuticals, where the powdered milk is widely in the mainland, said they had never heard of the brand and were sure the brand is not on sale in Macau.
"As of September 12, there are 432 cases of kidney stones in the urinary systems of infants according to reports from health departments nationwide," Health Minister Gao Qiang told journalists.
He said local authorities in Hebei province had ordered the Sanlu Group to stop production after finding its milk powder was contaminated.
"We will severely punish and discipline those people and workers who have acted illegally," he said.
Gao added the Sanlu powder had been exported to Taiwan for "food-processing purposes" but had not been sold to any other countries.
He confirmed state media reports that farmers and milk sellers added the industrial chemical melamine to their milk to boost the protein content, causing the kidney stones.

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