118 tons of Evian water impounded

Updated: 2007-05-30 16:36
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Group Danone, the world's biggest yogurt maker, said Chinese officials seized about 118 tons of its Evian mineral water for breaching local safety rules.

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The water, which arrived in China in February, failed quality inspections by Shanghai customs officials for having excessive amounts of bacteria, the Paris-based company said in an e-mailed statement today. The water is being kept in a warehouse and will be shipped back to France, it said.

China's government applies a bacteria standard "different from that set by the World Health Organization," the company said in the statement.

Danone joins Yum! Brands Inc.'s KFC chain andretailers such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc. among international consumer goods companies to have fallen foul of Chinese health regulators in the past two years. Procter & Gamble Co., the largest U.S. consumer- products maker, in September halted sales of Japanese-made SK-II cosmetics in China after a health regulator said they contained dangerous and banned substances.