Baby formula rationed in Australia

Jan. 2, 2013 at 2:01 PM

SYDNEY, Jan. 2 (UPI) -- Retailers said baby formula is in short supply in Australia due to increased demand from Chinese parents seeking foreign supplies they believe aren't tainted.

The nation's largest selling brand Karicare Aptamil Gold has been put on ration with many drug stores and supermarkets limiting customers to six or fewer tins, pharmacists told News Limited Wednesday. One drug store manager whose location had run out of the formula said he was offered money by a Chinese man to tip him off on when the next shipment arrived.

In 2008, at least six babies died in China and another 300,000 became ill after drinking tainted milk. Since then, foreign demand for infant formula has increased.

Karicare said it has increased production at its New Zealand plant from 5,000 tons to 20,000 tons -- with plans to increase capacity by another 50 percent in the coming months -- to keep up with demand.

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