Almost a decade later and concern of melamine adulteration is still present in the industry


Media advisory from BI Nutraceuticals

The US FDA has placed an automatic detention on all vegetable proteins.

We have recently learned they are watching for melamine contamination. As you may recall, in 2007, pet foods containing vegetable proteins contaminated with melamine led to thousands of cat and dog deaths and illness worldwide.

According to FDA, they “received more than 17,000 consumer complaints relating to this outbreak, and those complaints included reports of approximately 1950 deaths of cats and 2200 deaths of dogs.”

For an importer to bypass the detention, they have to receive, detain and test five different shipments then submit all results to FDA.

FDA does not test the shipments themselves, but requires the importers to do it at an FDA-approved lab within a certain timeframe. If importers do not meet these requirements, FDA will have the importer either immediately destroy or export the material. Owing to these automatic detentions, delays are expected for imports of vegetable proteins.

BI is, and has been, taking preventive measures against melamine adulteration.

Simple protein tests determine an ingredient’s protein content by digestion methods that release and then detect nitrogen.

Melamine can make low quality ingredients appear to have higher protein content by elevating the total nitrogen content.

There is a different, definitive test using Liquid Chromatography–Mass Spectrometry available in the market, which detects the presence of melamine.

BI utilises LC-MS to confirm that no melamine is present in our protein ingredients.

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BI prides itself on being a high quality supplier. We will continue to monitor this and other situations that impact the botanical ingredient supply chain.