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The Department of Internal Affairs

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Government Inquiry into Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC) Contamination Incident

Updated 28 November 2014

The Report from the independent panel examining Part A of the Government’s Inquiry into the Whey Protein Contamination incident has been delivered to Ministers Hon Jo Goodhew, Minister for Food Safety, and Hon Nathan Guy, Minister for Primary Industries.

Read the news release: Final report of WPC inquiry received

Report on New Zealand’s Dairy Food Safety Regulatory System

Expressions of interest and provisional list of issues for final part of the Inquiry

The Inquiry reconvened on Monday 12 May 2014 to address Part A of the Terms of Reference.  The Inquiry has released a provisional list of issues, and an expressions of interest form.  Those wishing to participate in this part of the Inquiry should complete the form and return it to the Inquiry by 5pm on Monday 19 May 2014. The Inquiry will provide more information about its processes after it has received the expression of interest forms, noting that submissions will be due on Tuesday 3 June 2014 by 5pm

Report on New Zealand’s Dairy Food Safety Regulatory System


Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy and Minister for Food Safety Nikki Kaye have released the first of two reports from the Government Inquiry into the Whey Protein Concentrate Contamination Incident. The report addresses Parts B and C of the Terms of Reference for the Inquiry.

The Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy and Minister for Food Safety Nikki Kaye have also released the Government response to the report.

Terms of Reference

The Terms of Reference for the Inquiry are set out in full below.

Inquiry members

The three Inquiry members are Miriam Dean CNZM QC (chair), Tony Nowell CNZM and Dr Anne Astin PSM.

Miriam Dean CNZM QC

Miriam Dean has extensive governance and commercial litigation experience.  A former partner at Russell McVeagh, she is a Queen’s Counsel whose practice focuses on commercial, competition and consumer law, arbitration and mediation.  She was also recently the lead reviewer for the 2012 Review of the Crown Law Office.

She is currently chair of both New Zealand on Air and the Banking Ombudsman Scheme.  She is also a director of Crown Fibre Holdings, the Government’s investment vehicle responsible for managing the introduction of ultra-fast broadband to urban areas, and the Auckland Council-controlled organisation managing the Council’s investment portfolio.

Ms Dean is a former president of the New Zealand Bar; previously also a member of the Auckland Transition Agency, the government’s Electricity Market Review and the IANZ Council.

Tony Nowell CNZM

Mr Nowell has extensive governance, food standards and export sector experience. He is currently the chair of Scion (New Zealand Forest Research Institute Ltd), a director of Food Standards Australia New Zealand, New Zealand Food Innovation Auckland and the National Export Advisory Board. A past chair of the New Zealand Food and Grocery Council and the former Chief Executive of Zespri International Ltd, he also previously held senior management roles with Griffin’s Foods Ltd and Sara Lee Corporation.

He co-chaired the New Zealand Government’s Food and Beverage Task Force in 2005 and currently represents New Zealand on the APEC Policy Partnership for Food Security.

Dr Anne Astin PSM

Dr Astin has extensive scientific and management experience, including 10 years as the Chief Executive Officer who developed, established and led the start-up of a government statutory authority for dairy food safety in Victoria, Australia.

The Inquiry is supported by a legal advisor, Simon Mount, and two policy advisors, Mark Patchett and Sally Johnston.

Independent peer reviewer

Professor Alan Reilly

Professor Reilly, Chief Executive of the Food Safety Authority of Ireland, has agreed to act as expert peer reviewer for the Inquiry’s reports.

Professor Reilly has worked for more than 30 years in the area of food safety. Before taking up his current role, he worked in the Food Safety Programme of the World Health Organization in Geneva. He is also the chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of the European Food Information Council.

Useful links


Kelley Reeve
Head of Secretariat

Whey Protein Concentrate Contamination Inquiry
PO Box 144
Wellington 6140

Direct Dial: +64 4 894 6081

Media contact

Sandra Bennett, phone 04 495 6024, mobile 027 839 1606 or email