8 May 2014

Final part of botulism inquiry to start

7:28 am on 8 May 2014

The Government will launch on 12 May the final part of its inquiry into the botulism false alarm that Fonterra triggered last year when it recalled potentially contaminated whey protein concentrate.

It will investigate how the suspect dairy ingredient entered international markets and how that was handled.

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Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

The Government's already dealt with the first parts of the inquiry, which included measures to strengthen the regulations covering dairy food safety.

Primary Industries and Food Safety Ministers Nathan Guy and Nikki Kaye said the third and final part of the inquiry had to wait until the Ministry for Primary Industries completed its own compliance investigation.

That led to Fonterra admitting four charges laid by the ministry and being fined $300,000.

Fonterra is still facing legal action from one of the companies it supplied with whey protein concentrate, Danone, a French-owned food multinational, is suing it for more than $300 million.

And as a result of the botulism scare, China is still banning imports of some bulk dairy ingredients from Fonterra.