Minister of Health Discourages Wine Drinking

Minister of Health has discouraged the public from drinking wine, especially white wine -mostly heavily contaminated with poisonous methyl alcohol or methanol.

H.E. Mam Bunheng made the call late last week when visiting hospitalised victims of white win poisoning Kampong Chhnang province.

According to Director of Kampong Chhnang Provincial Health Department Mr. Prak Vonn, the poisoning incident happened a day earlier and as of noon of Dec. 9, death toll rose to 15 while 79 others were being hospitalised at the province's referral hospital.

H.E. Mam Bunheng explained that most white wine product contains improper amount of methanol harmful for the health. Stopping the consumption will tremendously reduce health risks.

Theoretically, "methanol when drunk is metabolised first to formaldehyde and then to formic acid or formate salts. These are poisonous to the central nervous system and may result in blindness, coma, and death."

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press