First It’s Not Safe, and Then It Is! The FDA Position on Melamine May Give Us All a Case of Whiplash
Melamine was first synthesized by a German chemist in 1834, and melamine resin is used in Formica for countertops and dry erase boards as well as flame retardants. A 1958 patent described the use of melamine as a non-protein nitrogen (NPN) for cattle. Melamine is sometimes illegally added to food products in order to increase the apparent protein content. Standard tests that estimate protein levels by measuring the nitrogen content can be misled by adding nitrogen-rich compounds such as melamine.