After reading this article, I was shocked and scared. I started thinking about whether I ever drank or ate any Chinese dairy products. I couldn’t believe that such contamination could cause thousands of children to be sick, and four infants to die. This article really got me thinking about trust. Nobody can trust the government, a company, or a salesperson fully.
Over the past month, thousands of babies were sick in China because milk was tainted with the banned industrial chemical, melamine. I conducted some research about this chemical and found out that melamine was a pesticide that led to reproductive damage, kidney stones, and irritation in the eyes. Because of this contamination, 22 dairy companies recalled their products.
The most shocking part of this story, however, is not that four infants died. It’s that the Sanlu Group Co. was already informed about the contamination in December 2007. Strangely, they did not do anything about the contamination. Even the government, who was monitoring these companies, did not make a public announcement about the milk. I was disappointed that some people wanted to keep the contamination a secret because of their economic benefits. As a result, the head of China’s product quality watchdog agency resigned on Sept. 22, and General Manager Tian Wenhua was fired from the board of directors. If these leaders of China publically dealt with the contamination, the milk crisis would not have happened. Because of their dishonesty, China’s economy is suffering (since countries/companies are banning Chinese dairy products, including Starbucks) and a strong mistrust in the Chinese government has formed.
If there were one thing we should learn from this crisis, it would be the importance of honesty. Without honesty, one cannot gain any trust. I don’t think I would feel very comfortable if I was a Chinese citizen under the Chinese government either.