Editorial do South China Morning Post (18-09-2008)
"The overriding priority now is to restore confidence in the food-safety regime. The scandal leaves no room for complacency about the need for further urgent reform. The mainland cannot afford a system that is toxic to its next generation. And its poor cannot afford imported milk powder. Decisive action is needed. There is a need for a comprehensive inspection regime, independent of control by the milk companies, to ensure quality at every step from farm to shop. The mainland encourages the development of national brands with a quality-recognition scheme that exempts them from inspections. Milk companies implicated in the scandal which enjoyed this distinction have now, rightly, lost it. Sensibly, the exemptions will no longer apply to food products. Clearly there is a need to subject all to regular testing to maintain standards.
Victims have been promised free medical care. But doctors cannot rule out long-term health effects on infants. Financial support is needed to ensure the free services are available for as long as they are needed. Fair compensation must also be paid to those who have suffered damage to their health, or that of their children, as a result of the contamination. The government should impose a levy on the companies involved in order to cover the costs.
The damage done by this scandal will be long-lasting. Beijing must face up to it and take urgent steps to ensure that it can never occur again".