Swiss institute develops new melamine tracing method

19 January 2009 17:04  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS news)--Researchers at the Swiss federal institute of technology (ETH Zurich) have developed a new method to quickly trace and analyse melamine in milk, they said on Monday.

The need for a quick and reliable analysis to trace melamine in milk had become urgent after last year’s melamine scandal in China, the institute said.

Melamine-laced milk powder claimed the lives of six infants while 294,000 babies were found to have suffered from kidney-related diseases.

ETH’s method – described as "extractive electro-spray ionisation" – yielded results within 30 seconds, compared with up to 60 minutes by conventional methods, it said.

In a next step, ETH was working on a portable analysis apparatus that could be used flexibly to supervise contamination levels at milk bottling facilities and other points in the dairy chain, it said.

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By: Stefan Baumgarten
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