Leaked docs show MOH woefully unprepared for Botulism outbreak

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Oh dear oh dear. Leaked documents showing Ministry of Health advice to Tony Ryall and Jo Goodhew over the Fonterra botulism scare point to the MOH being woefully underprepared for an outbreak.

Remember just a few months ago,?Botulism Siouxie ? recent recipient of the $100,000 Prime Minister?s Science Media Communication Prize, caused widespread angst by saying ?Botulinum toxin A is one of the most toxic substance known to man.?One kilogram of it would be enough to kill the entire human population?.

You?d hope the MOH would be able to cope, but documents show an alarming admission.

In an August 2013 MOH Situation Report, the Acting Director of Public Health, Dr Fran McGrath provided an update on the MOH?s actions in response to Fonterra?s contaminated Whey Protein Concentrate and Nutricia Karicare Recall.

McGrath must have been desperate to give Ministers confidence that the MOH was all over the issue like a rash, especially just in case botulism started spreading like wildfire among the population.

At the start of the SitRep, McGrath states ?There have been no cases of infant botulism reported in New Zealand in the last 20 years?. From that you?d expect a sigh of relief from Ministers. ? Read more »

MPI Panics, Ctd

It?s now day 4 of?MPI?s colossal advertising campaign designed to slaughter Nutricia?and the Karicare infant formula brand.

Clearly the panic in MPI under Nathan Guy continues.

While everyone else is moving on, MPI have obviously decided to stick to the ad-spend no matter what damage it may be doing.

Maybe they?d like to venture out into the supermarkets and actually see what?s happening on the shop shelves. They may actually see that Nutricia?s Karicare is back on the shelves in spite of the govt-funded campaign to scare every living consumer off the product.? Read more »


MPI Panics

If you ever want to see a Government department not think about unintended consequences, all you have to do is open up the newspapers and see their full-page ads announcing recall of infant formula.

I?posted the other day about this Fonterra thingy, that while a complete PR fiasco for Fonterra, some perspective is needed. See not a single person has died, not a single person has fallen ill and there hasn?t been scores of people admitted to hospitals the world over.

But MPI has to be seen doing something.

So it?s spending a fortune on print ads and online banner ads like these.

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This Fonterra issue is going to hurt us all

The Fonterra contamination issue is going to hurt. ?Lots.

But don’t worry, before we have even discovered the full extent of the problem, the usual suspects are using it for political advantage.



I’m just waiting for The Green Taliban and the Labour Party to chime in, and the Media to pile in right behind them to somehow link all this to a failure of the GCSB to do its job*. ?Or something.

You wait.

Christopher Adams?reports

Russia has made one of the most extreme responses to Fonterra’s contamination scare so far, banning all goods made by the New Zealand dairy giant, according to media reports.

Russia was not on the list of affected countries released by Trade Minister Tim Grocer yesterday, which included New Zealand, Australia, China, Vietnam and Thailand.

Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported that the country’s consumer-protection watchdog was recalling Fonterra’s products, including infant formula, and advising consumers in Russia not to buy its products.

This follows China banning all Fonterra milk powder imports.

The only upside I can see here is that it may just distract the media long enough to get it out of its ‘the Government is destroying democracy’ self-pity-fest long enough to switch to a ‘the Government isn’t doing the right thing about this milk powder scare’ beat up. ?The spin has been decided. ?The evidence will be made to fit.

*) yes, I’m being sarcastic

Public Service Announcement – Nutricia Karicare

1168-1If you’re using Nutricia’s Karicare?baby/infant formula in New Zealand, please take note

The products being recalled are:

– Karicare Infant Formula Stage 1 (0?6 months)?in NEW ZEALAND ONLY with batch numbers 3169 and 3170 (use by 17 06 2016 and 18 06 2016). The batch number and use by date can be found on the base of the tin.

– Karicare Gold+ Follow On Formula Stage 2 (6?12 months)?in NEW ZEALAND ONLY with batch number D3183 (use by 31 12 2014). The batch number and use by date can be found on the base of the tin.

Consumers should not feed products with these batch numbers to infants.

Read more »