Hong Kong stated Thursday it'll test babies who've consumed Japanese-made infant formulas found to possess inadequate amounts of iodine, following the items were purchased from the city's shelves.
Authorities found the Wakodo and Morinaga brands didn't have enough iodine, and cautioned they might have "adverse health effects" on babies' thyroid glands and brains.
"We urge parents to take their babies to the 10 government-designated health centers for blood tests," a spokesperson in the Food and Environment Hygiene Department told AFP, adding that around 2,000 babies might be affected.
The federal government purchased the 2 items to become taken off shop shelves, following a finding of the random test on 14 milk brands.
The banned items that are for babies aged as much as nine several weeks, put together to contain under one-third around the globe Health Organization's suggested amounts of iodine, an important nutrient for infant development.
"This may affect the functioning of the thyroid gland," the Center for Food Safety stated inside a statement.
"If the thyroid gland's normal functions are significantly affected, there may be potential impact on the brain development of infants."
The federal government stated it might still test other brands.
Japanese-made baby formula makes up about around three percent from the total milk brands distributed in Hong Kong.
Their recognition declined following the nuclear disaster in Japan this past year sparked fears of radiation poisoning.
The producers of Wakodo and Morinaga formula stated the items weren't intended available in Hong Kong, which in fact had different needs for iodine content than Japan.
"We presume that local importers... are marketing it there," Morinaga speaker Natsumi Takahashi told AFP in Japan.
"When we export our products, we make them compatible with the standards of countries in which they are sold."
Japan government doesn't allow producers to include iodine to powdered milk items, which might however contain some iodine using their company elements, she stated.
Kenta Mitsuhashi, a spokesperson for Asahi Group Holdings including Wakodo, stated the organization had "no clue" how its milk formula wound up in Hong Kong.
"Wakodo does not export this product to Hong Kong at present," he said, adding that the "domestically marketed product is safe and can be used without any worry".
"The government does not allow iodine to be added to powdered milk," Mitsuhashi stated.
Kyodo news agency reported that Morinaga thought formula producers weren't allowed to supplement their items with iodine due to the relatively great deal of iodine-wealthy seaweeds consumed in Japan.
Hong Kong is really a favorite spot for landmass Chinese consumers to stock on baby formula, because of its relatively high health standards and powerful enforcement.
Landmass China's dairy industry was rocked in 2008 when a minimum of six babies died and the other 300,000 grew to become ill from milk tainted using the industrial chemical melamine.
Melamine has been added to own appearance of greater protein levels.