The Philippine Food and Drug Administration (FDA) vowed Monday to heighten its monitoring of three batches of whey protein concentrate (WPC80) produced in Fonterra manufacturing site in New Zealand after the product was found to contain with hazardous substance.
FDA Acting Director General Kenneth Hartigan-Go said that his office would be collecting samples in the market for testing as part of its monitoring and surveillance activities.
"All consumers are advised to buy dairy products and infant formulae that are registered with the FDA. Moreover, all consumers are hereby informed that whey protein concentrates are also found in high-nutrient food or dietary supplements for body builders. They are advised to make sure that the products that they buy have passed FDA safety and quality evaluation," he said.
Three batches of whey protein concentrate produced at a single Fonterra manufacturing site in New Zealand were found positive for the presence of Clostridium botulinum on July 31, 2013.
Clostridium botulinum is a species of harmful spore-forming bacteria that produce preformed toxin in processed food products, especially when manufacturing or processing plants fail to implement proper food hygienic practices and sterilization of canned goods or any tightly sealed food products.
Ingestion of preformed toxin may result to symptoms like double vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing and muscle weakness that is symmetric and descends through the body and possibly death, usually due to respiratory failure.
FDA, however, assured that so far consumer products imported by local importers and distributed by Fonterra Brands (Philippines) Inc. do not contain the batches of WPC80.