Chinese tighten dairy regulations after scandal

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China's State Council tightened quality control regulations for the dairy industry Friday, as authorities in Macau and Hong Kong reported several children had kidney stones blamed on Chinese tainted milk.

Contaminated milk powder, laced with the industrial chemical melamine, has been blamed for causing the deaths of four infants and sickening more than 54,000 others.

More than 10,000 children remained hospitalized with eight of them in serious condition, the Health Ministry said.

The new regulations, effective immediately, tighten control over cattle breeding, the purchase of raw milk and the production and sale of dairy products, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

The measures also increase punishments for those caught violating safety standards.

On Friday, police in northern Hebei province arrested a suspect accused of producing 600 tons of melamine-spiked protein powder, Xinhua said. Eight dairy farm owners and milk buyers were also arrested purchasing the powder, it said.

In Hong Kong, a 10-year-old boy was diagnosed with two kidney stones, the Department of Health said, raising the total number of children with milk-related kidney stones to seven in Hong Kong and Macau.

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