Over 12m boxes of French baby milk recalled in 83 countries

More than 12 million boxes of powdered baby milk have now been recalled in 83 countries in a Salmonella scandal involving French company Lactalis.

The dairy firm’s CEO, Emmanuel Besnier, confirmed the extent of the contamination risk to French media.

He however promised the company would compensate any families affected.

The products have been subject to a recall since December, after Salmonella bacteria was discovered at a factory.

Salmonella can cause severe diarrhoea, stomach cramps, vomiting, and severe dehydration. It can be life-threatening, especially in young children.

So far 35 cases have been reported in France and another one has been confirmed in Spain.

Lawsuits have been filed by parents who say their children became unwell after drinking the formula.

A spokesman told the BBC that all the countries affected had been informed, in Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa. The UK, US and Australia were not affected, he added.

The Lactalis Group is one of the world’s largest producers of dairy products, with annual sales of $21 billion, it has 246 production sites in 47 countries and employs 15,000 people in France alone.

The company has said they believe the contamination was caused by renovation work at their Celia factory in Craon, in north-west France.

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