Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Deputy Minister Datuk Tan Lian Hoe said control of prices of the products would result in a conflict in the policy of encouraging breastfeeding as stipulated by the Health Ministry.
She said the hike in the prices of baby milk products lately was outside the control of the government due to Malaysia's dependence on the supply of milk from abroad and the increase in the price of the products in the United States.
"Malaysia is not a milk producer. The supply from outside is subjected to the movement of prices in the global market. Only four per cent of milk is locally sourced while the rest is imported.
"Among the factors causing the hike in milk prices is the hike in the price of milk in the United States.
This factor is worsened by drought there which has destroyed crops and caused the prices of animal feed to go up," she said.
Tan said although baby milk products were controlled items under the Supply Control Act 1961, their prices were not controlled by the Government.