ANZ’s Morning Brief highlights a PR assault is now required to reassure NZ’s trading partners that the chemical DCD poses no health risks.
“Dairy accounts for around one third of NZ’s exports,” says the ANZ brief. “It is somewhat alarming, therefore, that traces of dicyandiamide, or DCD, have been found in NZ milk and milk powder, as a result of improved testing technology.
In today’s Morning Brief, ANZ stressed New Zealand’s exports rely on the country’s reputation for food safety which has been a driver of NZ’s hugely successful exports of dairy products to China in recent years.
DCD is a product used in fertilisers to reduce nitrate run-off into waterways. It is considered non-toxic at low dosages, and there are no international standards for the acceptable level in food products.
ANZ notes this is a problem in itself, as some countries will reject any levels of chemicals that do not have agreed standards.
NZ’s two biggest fertiliser companies are voluntarily suspending usage of the chemical.
“The muted response of the NZD to the news suggests the issue is being kept in perspective so far, but the real test will be the Asian market opens.”