Inky milk ?
November 25, 2005 3:25 PM   Subscribe

Possible "contamination" of some baby milk-based products 30 million liters of big-brand name milk were recalled in Italy and other EU countries because of contamination by traces of ITX (ISOPROPYLTHIOXANTHONE) which is a product used in packaging printing.Tetrapack issued a press release (Italian language) in which they declare they are not going to use ITX for printing anymore as a precautionary measure. According to a memo sent to an italian consumer-oriented tv show(italian), Tetrapack acknowledges that 1200 more products use packaging with the same printing technology. What about their recall and is it happening worldwide ? [Google News query]
posted by elpapacito (13 comments total)
I heard this on the radio a few days ago - effects of the chemical on humans "debatable."
posted by fire&wings at 3:30 PM on November 25, 2005

As a side note to parents, the toxicity of ITX is uncertain meaning that it doesn't appear to have, as far as I know, immediate adverse effects, but little is known about long term exposure. I'm not a doctor not an expert in toxicity.
posted by elpapacito at 3:31 PM on November 25, 2005

fire&wings: yeah that's the same I heard, but as the substance shouldn't be in the milk to begin with I tought it's better the be advised then not.
posted by elpapacito at 3:32 PM on November 25, 2005

As I understand it, people shouldn't be feeding nursing-age babies anything but breast milk - preferably their mother's breast milk. Perhaps this will help people make that choice.

Disclaimer: I am neither a parent nor female.
posted by loquacious at 3:54 PM on November 25, 2005

... and this is FPP-worthy why?
posted by mischief at 4:25 PM on November 25, 2005

misch: complain in MetaTalk if you so wish.
posted by elpapacito at 4:39 PM on November 25, 2005

So should I switch back to lead paint? I heard that is good for baby's coat.
posted by tpl1212 at 5:36 PM on November 25, 2005

Havening worked in a smaller food production plant, I'm curious how packaging paint could have gotten in the product that was packaged.

There are bigger problems here than if this contaminant is harmful to humans or not.
posted by stirfry at 5:49 PM on November 25, 2005

Should I just go to Google News and make a post about each item? Pathetic.
posted by kjh at 6:20 PM on November 25, 2005

tetrapak packaging isn't big here at all yet, but this is wrong--were the inks leaching? how could it get inside? (usually packaging is preprinted elsewhere before being filled with product.)
posted by amberglow at 6:55 PM on November 25, 2005

According to the Italian forestry service, whose responsibilities include food safety

But of course.

In any case, it appear that new EU regulations on packaging are what sparked this -- Nestle and the printer tested the product and found it to exceed the allowable ppm limit, so they're responsibly taking it off the market. ITX isn't so much a known health risk as something that shouldn't be in food, like (per Thoreau) fish. Point being?
posted by dhartung at 11:36 PM on November 25, 2005

dhartung: not really, afaik Nestle didn't find out anything by its own, it was discovered by the local authorities doing safety tests on products.

Meanwhile the italian Health Minister is suing Nestle CEO Peter Brabeck for allegedly reporting that they reached an agreement concerning the handling the of the "tainted" milk. The minister denied and announced he received an apology letter from the abovemention CEO, a letter nobody as seen afaik.

ITX isn't so much a known health risk as something that shouldn't be in food, like (per Thoreau) fish. Point being??

Point being, what is ITX doing in the milk ? Why is it there ? What else is in that milk or other packaged foods that we're not aware of ? Because quite frankly, at least for milk, we had glass bottle that worked quite well and didn't offer any contamination problem.

Fact that it isn't proved nor disproved that ITX doesn't pose an health danger is lawyerese for "we don't know shit but as it's not likely to killiyou on the spot then it's ok, stop bothering us damaging OUR business". To which I offer the middle finger.
posted by elpapacito at 4:51 AM on November 26, 2005

I bet it's leaching thru the material. There's no way they print the packaging in the same factory they fill them.
posted by amberglow at 10:52 AM on November 26, 2005

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