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NZ opens up infant formula specifications for discussion

By Richard Whitehead+ , 31-Jul-2014

New Zealand’s Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has called on the food industry and interested parties to provide feedback on its proposed specifications for the manufacturing of infant formula.

Infant formula is an important product that can be the sole source of nutrition for a vulnerable population group,” said Deborah Roche, deputy director-general for policy and trade at the ministry.

As such, the specifications propose being more explicit about the technical requirements for infant formula manufacturing in a range of areas from building and equipment design, through to air quality management, ingredient management and packaging.”

The draft specifications have been developed as part of an inter-agency infant formula work programme.

The objectives of the draft specifications support the sustainable growth of New Zealand’s infant formula exports. However, it’s important we ensure these requirements are not overly prescriptive or have unintended consequences for businesses. An industry technical working group assisted in the development of the standard, and we are now seeking wider industry input.”

MPI is currently seeking submissions on the draft infant formula manufacturing specifications from any organisation or individual with an interest, and particularly from infant formula manufacturers and manufacturers of dairy ingredients intended for use in infant formula.  

Submissions on the draft manufacturing specifications close on Friday, September 12.

The ministry is also consulting on draft standards that were released earlier this month that set out proposals to clarify labelling requirements on export infant formula, and implement systems to improve MPI’s monitoring of infant formula exports to markets that do not currently require official New Zealand government assurances for infant formula exports.  Submissions on these close on August 20.