FDA sets safe level for infant formula contaminant

Saturday, November 29, 2008

WASHINGTON -- Federal regulators set a safety threshold Friday for the industrial chemical melamine that is greater than the amount of contamination found so far in U.S.-made infant formula.

Food and Drug Administration officials set a threshold of 1 part per million of melamine in formula, provided a related chemical isn't present. They insisted the formulas are safe.

The setting of the standard comes days after The Associated Press reported that FDA tests had found traces of melamine in the infant formula of one major U.S. manufacturer and cyanuric acid, a chemical relative, in the formula of a second major maker.

Both the new safety level and the amount of the chemical found in U.S.-made infant formula are far below the amounts of melamine added to infant formula in China that have been blamed for killing at least three babies and making thousands ill.

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