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Sri Lanka orders ban of Fonterra products

Published: 5:55PM Friday August 16, 2013 Source: ONE News

A Sri Lankan court has issued an order banning the sale, distribution and advertising of all Fonterra milk products for two weeks.

The order was sought by the National Health Services Union because Fonterra products still on the market were suspected to be contaminated with dicyandiamide (DCD).

The decision comes as Fonterra has placed two of its senior managers on leave, effective immediately, the company has announced.

Managing director of Fonterra New Zealand Milk products, Gary Romano, resigned on Wednesday in the wake of the botulism scare.

Fonterra is continuing its internal operational investigation into the circumstances surrounding the recent recall of whey protein concentrate.

The company announced on August 3 that a concentrated whey product it produces for infant formula, beverages and animal feed was potentially contaminated with Clostridium botulinum, a bacteria linked to botulism.

The scare prompted recalls of some baby formula products and sparked consumer panic in overseas markets, particularly China, the dairy exporter's biggest market, though there have been no reports of illness or deaths.

Fonterra Chief Executive Theo Spierings said that placing the two on leave did not pre-empt the findings of the operational review and they will continue to be involved in the ongoing investigation.

The internal operational review will be completed by the end of the month and is looking into the transparency of information in the business, and how that information is escalated to the appropriate levels.

Fonterra's Board of Directors is continuing a separate inquiry and the findings from the operational review will be shared with them.