It is time to ban imports of Chinese gluten and protein concentrate

Back in 2003, when Mad Cow Disease was discovered in a single, 4-year-old Holstein cow on a diary farm in Mabton, WA, China was quick to react, banning all imports of U.S. beef, a move that cost U.S. ranchers $119 million a year in lost sales. To this day, China has yet to fully lift its ban.

And yet faced with a massive, and apparently intentional contamination of imported Chinese wheat, corn and rice gluten — an “economic adulteration” that has already poisoned thousands of dogs, cats, pigs, chickens and probably humans — the U.S. Food and Drug Administration stubbornly continues to allow the import and sale of suspect Chinese gluten and protein concentrates.

We have no idea exactly how toxic melamine is in humans, or whether it was the only industrial chemical used to spike nitrogen levels, or for how long and on how many imported Chinese products this dangerous fraud has been perpetrated. What we do know is that melamine is an impurity that should absolutely not be in our pet, livestock and human food supply — and yet, there it is. It is killing our cats and dogs, contaminating our livestock, threatening the public health, and potentially costing American producers and retailers hundreds of millions of dollars in recalls and lost sales. What we know is that this poison has been introduced into our food supply via three different products imported from three different Chinese manufacturers, that the practice is widespread, and that it continued even after the news of the first melamine-tainted wheat gluten broke worldwide.

Given what we know, there can be only one response: it is time to ban the import of all Chinese gluten and protein concentrates.

If China could impose a four-year (and counting) ban on imported U.S. beef due to a single sick cow, then the U.S. is certainly more than justified to ban imported Chinese gluten and protein concentrates in light of the evidence already known. This is a product tampering case of massive proportions, and only an import ban on suspect Chinese products can start to restore public faith in the safety of our food supply.

It is also the only legal and economic tool available to force the Chinese government to fulfill its obligation to assure the safety and purity of the billions of dollars of agricultural and manufactured food products it exports annually to the U.S. and the rest of the world.

Despite the overwhelming evidence of widespread and intentional adulteration, the Chinese government has refused to accept responsibility, and refused to let FDA officials into the country to inspect the manufacturing facilities in question. This is simply unacceptable, and only a broad and immediate ban can send a strong enough message to the Chinese government that their total and complete cooperation is absolutely required if they are to retain the U.S. as an open market. Only a costly ban can incentivize China’s honest brokers and producers to pressure their own government to crack down on those cheaters who are undermining the integrity of their industry.

It is time for the FDA to stop dithering and prevaricating, to stop protecting the identity of distributors and manufacturers at the expense of consumers, and to stop focusing on allaying public fears even as the known risk to public health steadily expands. It is time for the FDA to stop promising costly border inspections it simply does not have the resources to thoroughly carry out.

It is time to impose a ban on Chinese imports.

Comments

  1. 1

    Richard Pope spews:

    We should ban practically all processed food from China. Think about all those “high protein” bars they are selling nowadays. I am not sure how many of those are made in China, or use China ingredients, but the thought is really scary.

  2. 2

    Richard Pope spews:

    Maybe a nice symbolic demonstration would be a good thing. A protest at the Port of Seattle headquarters, since there is no Red China consulate in the Seattle area. Top it off with the burning of the Communist flag. Next Tuesday (May Day!) would be ideal.

  3. 3

    spews:

    Unless and until we have some reliable way of ensuring that food products from China are safe, I’ve got to go with Mr. Pope on this one.

    Chinese food companies have deliberately manufactured and sold infant formula that has resulted in malnutrition and death in Chinese infants. If they’re willing to do that, somehow I cannot see them having a problem selling tainted nutrition bars to American joggers.

    This problem has shown itself to be too widespread for it to simply be either a mistake or an isolated incident. An entire industry has chosen to put a chemical in a food product in order to make it appear to be more valuable. They showed no concern that the chemical might be toxic, just that it wouldn’t normally be detected.

    “Criminal” just isn’t a strong enough word here.

  4. 4

    spews:

    goldy….do not forget about the lead contaminated children’s chalk, the heavy metal and lead contaminated kid’s jewelry….ALL FROM CHINA and recently.
    we should ban everything we EAT, WEAR, OR PLAY with that comes in from china.
    this has been going on for a long time. long enough to make quite a few of us wonder if china wasn’t just doing this on purpose.
    it’s way past time to stop these imports.
    after all…china is a country that executes people because they have the right organ match for someone with power/money. they also skin dogs and cats alive for the so called “fake” fake fur that so many americans are wearing after buying a “cheap” coat at target or NORDSTROMS.
    look at the recent human body “art display”….good god.
    i mean…what would it take to ban chinese imports that can and will hurt us? they have already shown that they don’t give a RAT’S ASS about anything other than making money at everyone’s expense.
    you want nasty “capitalists”………..well, i think you may have finally found the people you are looking for.
    and they are partying like it’s still 1899……….

  5. 5

    robin spews:

    Goldy,

    Processed livestock feeds are loaded with the protein concentrates. Just looking with horror at the ingredients in a couple bags of pelleted horse feed. And I’m sure the same with diary and beef fattening feed. I’d be shocked if they are not spiking those as well.

  6. 6

    spews:

    robin…..those feeds are the first place this stuff would go. if you do as i am and only buy ORGANIC your livestock will be okay. the stuff that was imported was FOOD GRADE and that means it can, and will, go everywhere.
    that’s about the only thing the FDA does enforce….food grade versus feed grade………

  7. 7

    robin spews:

    Also I would guess that some of the major agri-business giants are actually operating farms in China. Hell cheap labor and no costly safety regs.

  8. 8

    RightEqualsStupid spews:

    The Publicans have sold most of America to China. We can’t possibly make any sort of ban like this work because they will call in all the debt that the Bush regime has assigned to them. They can overtake us anytime they want without firing a single shot.

  9. 9

    robin spews:

    For 4 of my horses the oats and hay are fine, but I have one older mare that needs to be supplemented with the processed feed. All the processed feeds are loaded with all the proteins.

  10. 10

    Daddy Love spews:

    RP

    Um, FYI, there is no “Red China consulate” because there is no Red China.

    But why not protest in front of the ACTUAL Chinese Consulate? San Francisco is really nice right now.

  11. 11

    spews:

    robin….try a chopped sweet feed. it’s molasses and chopped alfalfa and they all come from here. most of them originate in nevada….and they will be fine.omolene….i wouldn’t be so sure about that. the chopped feed is a little ‘hot’ but if you also give your mare some bran mash she will get through this fine.

  12. 12

    drool spews:

    China seem sto be learning capitalism rather well. Unfortunately they are mimicking what it was like back in our industrial revolution……..which is what spawned the FDA. Now the FDA is behaving like a they are neutered.

    We need to lay down th elaw so the Chines put their house in order. If it hurts them economically they’ll act.

  13. 13

    Peter Carlin spews:

    I wonder how long this adulteration has been going on. If for a long time, why did pets just recently start dying? Could the adulteration have been going on for a while and the build-up finally reach toxic levels in pets now? If so and what is toxic is proportional to weight, there should be a correlation between weight of pets and date they died. One could extrapolate to infants, kids, adults from this.

  14. 14

    spews:

    daddyDEAREST………….no red china? can you read?
    and as far as what [not ever ]right said…….
    “The Publicans have sold most of America to China. We can’t possibly make any sort of ban like this work because they will call in all the debt that the Bush regime has assigned to them. They can overtake us anytime they want without firing a single shot.”
    okay…you get the idiot for the day award hands down. gawd….you are really this stupid? you act as if there was some VAST sea change OVERNIGHT, for god’s sake. this has been going on forever. did bill clinton sell us down the river? jimmy carter? no????
    this is why i make the statement that all politicians are alike. and they are. do you want to bet your life on it? cause now’s your chance!
    and where is nancy’i-never-met-a-mic-i-didn’t-want-to-french’ pelosi anyway????
    why isn’t she or some other democrat in control of almost everything running up and fixing this boo boo right now?
    because she ,like roger rabbit, is so busy promoting HER OWN AGENDA and being partisan that she can’t be bothered. you want to scream at someone? how about all the democrats that you are always gloating about “running everything”? why don’t you start screaming at them?
    because now is really your chance to test your “new” politicians in office…and i suspect you are afraid to do so……….

  15. 15

    ArtFart spews:

    All you geniuses seem to be oh-so-confident that the only adulterated ingredients are coming from China. The point, folks, is that nobody’s been keeping an eye on what sort things this stuff has in it, regardless of where it comes from.

    Or where it goes.

  16. 16

    Spineless spews:

    If Clinton could bomb suspected chemical weapons factories in Africa, let’s bomb the shit our of these known chemical “weapons” factories in China. lol… I’m only joking about the bombing, but doesn’t that make the argument about banning all food imports from China sound that much more reasonable?

    I said it before about a week ago. We need a ban on Chinese products. The current free trade policy with China does not work. If we block their products, then we cut some of their cash flow.

    How fast did China ban US beef imports? If China can ban imported beef from the US that quickly, our FDA is making the Chinese government look brilliant in how quickly they “protected” their citizens from the tainted US beef.

  17. 17

    Sam spews:

    While there may be a decent argument for banning all or some foodstuff imports from China, it weakens you argument to suggest that China’s reaction to the Mad Cow discovery should play any rolw whatsoever in the US response. The US in this matter should focus solely on doing what is best for its citizens, and even suggesting that the response should be punitively weighted against China based on perceived or even real past slights is to needlessly politicize the safety and welfare of the people.

  18. 18

    RightEqualsStupid spews:

    As usual the right wing spawn on this board wants to lie. Let’s refresh the memory of some fool like Ghost. Who’s had control of the White House for the last six plus years? And the Congtress for 12? Publicans that’s who. When we take over the White House in 08 you’ll get your wish. We’ll dismantle all the deals that coward Bush did to sell us down the river and then undeserving asswipes like you Ghost will be protected, whether you deserve it or not. Me personally, I would let them take you and do with you as they will.

  19. 19

    robin spews:

    Peter,

    My guess is that it has been going on for sometime. Which would explain the high rate of renal failure in cats, especially older cats, for years. But the latest mess is worse, my guess is that they are really spiking it now. Last month the FDA vet announced that the Melamine was as high as 6.6% in the wheat gluten, that’s real high. Cats for some reason have more sensitivity to toxics than other animals. And with cats they are more likely to only eat from the cat food bag or can. Most people with dogs (at least me) give them some table scraps, etc, possibly because dogs are better beggers. I’ve suspected for years that food had something to do with renal failure in cats but never thought it was anything as sinister as this. When a good friend passed five years ago, I took his 10 year old cat who had minor renal/kidney problems-lots of infections etc. I switched him to a very high quality kibble for one meal and homemade raw for the other, and no problems since. Let’s say it is in processed horse feed, the horse also eats hay and or grass in the pasture, same with cattle and most livestock. Most house cats eat only what is in the can or bag and that might explain it as I doubt Melamine is very good for any of us to be eating.

  20. 20

    Norm spews:

    I’d say it’s past time to re-examine Chinas’ status as an MFN (most favored nation) for trade purposes. Can we really interpret the depravity of shipping toxic products to the U.S. (and presumably other nations as well) as anything other than greed? Economic warfare? Hmm give me money & I will sell you some crap that may kill you.(?) Isn’t that what drug lords do?

    Wake up America, the hyena’s & vulture’s are circling..

  21. 21

    Anna spews:

    Read the exposé in today’s NYTimes(4/25) about lax OSHA enforcement and the microwave popcorn additives. Bush & Co see our deaths and disabilities as just the price of doing business.

  22. 22

    robin spews:

    Goldy, is correct that we need to stop importing all feed and food products from China. Remember with the exception of horses, feed is food. But we also need a law with sharp teeth to anyone spiking any food and or feed product here as well. Do you really trust the ADM’s of the world not to spike something here as well? An actual truth in labeling law with long sharp teeth, because if not Melanine they will find something else. The pet food (Menu) mess had proved that these companies are only interested in the bottom line. I don’t think they were intentionally trying to kill our pets but they were sure as hell driving drunk and not bothering to stop when the first victim fell. Right now all the human food companies have to fear is lawyers. The people who lost pets will maybe get their vet bills and then only if they have everything documented, and proof the animal ate the product.

  23. 25

    Tlazolteotl spews:

    Crap. I just hosed a longish post while editing. Something about hitting the return key or something takes you back out to the main page and you lose everything.

    Let me try again.

    Melamine has low toxicity in humans, which is probably why it was chosen as an adulterant in the first place. These people are crooked, but not that stupid. It is only because cats are sensitive that we even have a clue that this was going on. It appears that something changed after November (when Menu Foods says they changed to a Chinese source of wheat gluten) because vets started to see a spike in renal failures, and that is when the red flags started going up.

    There is a larger problem with renal failures in cats, not from adulterants, but due to the fact that dry diets especially are not nutritionally suitable for cats, because among other things, they have too many carbohydrates and not enough moisture. This puts a strain on their kidneys which catches up to them over their lifetimes, especially in male cats.

    As far as banning Chinese imports, I don’t think the FDA has the regulatory authority to do that. I think that is one of the things Congress is arguing about now, isn’t it? That the FDA doesn’t even have the authority for force companies to withdraw or recall products, and that they have to negotiate with companies in order to get even marginally stronger warning labels on drugs?

    Sounds like everyone needs to get in contact with their Congressional representatives, and then call two friends hand get them to do the same, to put pressure on the State Department or whoever it is that deals with trade issues at this level. Maybe the US could sue them in the World Trade Court, or whatever that body is called.

  24. 26

    Tlazolteotl spews:

    OK, Christmasghost, it just says that melamine isn’t a known human carcinogen. I’ll go look at the shorter-term toxicology and see if there is anything there, but you’re barking up the wrong tree with the cancer thing.

  25. 27

    spews:

    Tlazolteotl ……i wasn’t barking up any tree, my friend. it’s interesting though that none of you can even be given any dry,scientific data without being a partisan ass about it, isn’t it?
    it’s a thinker……..*hint* cancer is the LEAST of our worries with this……
    perhaps the thing to do is be proactive about this, hm?
    less whining, more doing?
    after all isn’t this the government you all hate? i mean that’s all i ever hear. so why were you trusting them in the first place?just how stupid are you, anyway? see how that works?
    just because the resident of the white house changes does not mean the FDA does. THAT’S REALITY.

    here is a common sense approach to this problem:
    why don’t we force all companies to list the point of origin for all additives and foodstuffs? then we, the buyers, could decide for ourselves if we wanted to risk it.we could even suggest the companies use little flags, from the countries of origin, after ingredients that weren’t from the US.
    see….simple fix.
    and ,of course, the FDA has to develop some real teeth. and i mean the kind the EPA has…the kind that can shut operations down and send people to jail.

    oh…and for all of you that like to eat produce from south america…..i wouldn’t if i were you.
    but, hey, i am just a stupid conservative, right? what do i know………
    and as far as the comment about the spinach. yup…once again it boils down to common sense. would you eat something you found on the ground? no? would you eat something [that dozens of dirty hands had been handling] without washing or cooking it first and then be SHOCKED, shocked i tell you, when you got sick?
    no????

  26. 28

    Tlazolteotl spews:

    I went and had a look at the animal toxicity studies listed on ToxNet. Rats, mice, and dogs were tested via diet, for various effects. Basically, it caused kidney and bladder stones to be formed in these animals. In male rats, there was a reaction of the bladder lining associated with cancer in the most highly exposed animals.

    Dogs tolerated extremely high dosages for an entire year, though they also had stones and crystals of di-melamine monophosphate in their urine (which continued even a year after they were no longer exposed via diet). However, their tissues looked normal when examined.

    Strangely enough, it looks like melamine does cause some sort of developmental disruption in fish, along with lower hatch rates of eggs (a sign of in-egg mortality) in trout and in a mussel species.

    So, it’s a mixed bag. The human toxicity data is all for exposure through the skin (e.g., what you would get from working with the resin in an industrial setting); there isn’t anything there about oral exposure. So maybe we don’t know how orally exposed humans would do; the exposed pigs didn’t seem to show any signs of ill health, they just tested urine and got hits at a factory farm in California, from what I understand. So I’m guessing that in a lot of mammals the toxicity isn’t that great, and cats were our canary in the coal mine.

  27. 29

    robin spews:

    Tlazoletl,

    There are advantages of both dry and canned (wet) for cats as well as dogs. All canned can cause tooth decay issues and it’s almost impossible to scale a cat with out putting them under, which has risks. I’ve always scaled my dogs teeth every week and never had to have them cleaned at the vet, but not the cats. Bad teeth can cause kidney/liver issues as well and many animals have teeth which need some help. Any processed food in either cats or dogs has some health risks. That’s why I like raw for one meal per day. There are respected vets on both sides of the dry vs. wet debate. No vet is going to tell you to feed Melamine.

  28. 30

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Bush can’t afford to ban anything from China. He borrowed $$$ hundreds of billions from them. Besides, his FDA lackeys will gladly trade your health for profits.

  29. 31

    Tlazolteotl spews:

    Crap. Another post into the ether, apparently I tried to post the same time as christmasghost.

    Why would I hate government, and whatever gave you that idea? It isn’t the fact that you were giving data that got me on your case, ghost, it’s the fact that you were citing IRRELEVANT data, apparently with little understanding of what you were reading. So quiet down and let someone with a science background give it a try, eh?

    So, to try again:

    The toxicology of this compound appears to be a mixed bag. Probably more toxic to fish and molluscs than to mammals, as there were definite signs of within-egg mortality in a trout and a mussel species.

    But in mammals it does have a nasty habit of forming crystals and stones in the kidneys and bladder, which are also excreted in the urine, and tend to continue a long time after exposure. In male rats, there were some pre-cancerous changes in the lining of the bladder for those exposed to the highest doses.

    Dogs used in one study tolerated extremely high doses for quite some time. I suspect cats are more sensitive because melamine is apparently a potent diuretic, and cats are more likely to suffer renal failure if they get dehydrated.

    Human toxicity data is all via dermal exposure, so that isn’t any help. The exposed pigs reported about yesterday were identified as having melamine in their urine, but it doesn’t sound like anyone was concerned about how they were doing otherwise (I would think that a decline in expected growth rate, for example, would have been noticed).

  30. 33

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    The stock market soared into record territory today as joyful investors celebrated the subpoena of Condi Liar. Imagine what stocks would do if Wall Street saw Bush, Cheney, and Condi being loaded on the prison bus wearing plastic wrist ties! The Dow would double overnight. Capital gains sure beats working. There are too many disincentives against working. Now WSDOT has a plan to fine people $200 a month for crossing Lake Washington to work.

  31. 34

    spews:

    okay…before any of you start thinking that our government is the worst at regulating our food supply [and by far…they aren’t]here is a story that should make you laugh. and couldn’t we all use a good laugh about now?
    true story:
    when we were living in the Marquesas ,my husband, who is german and a huge beer fan bought a case of beer that had just come in from papeete. it was, of course, stamped by the french government….it even had their special seal on it.
    well, after a long hot day we sat in the shade and he opened a beer. it started foaming and he ,of course, accused ME of shaking it when i grabbed it for him. i said ‘tempting, but no…..’
    so he drank some, made a face and it kept foaming. i mean, it looked like a science fair volcano. did he stop drinking it? noooooooo…….
    however, he did comment that it tasted ‘funny’. so i ,being the always helpful wife said ‘so…don’t drink it’.
    which, considering he is german [code for super stubborn] was like throwing gasoline on a fire. he drank it right down. and what did he find in the bottom of the bottle?
    a mosquito coil!!!!! they hadn’t even washed the bottle before they refilled it.
    i have to admit that i couldn’t stop laughing…..and when he pointed out that he had just consumed a TOXIC substance, well, that just made me laugh more. sorry…i know…i am HORRIBLE.LOL.
    that was over 29 years ago and he is still alive and kicking…….

  32. 35

    ArtFart spews:

    31 Roger, you know there’s probably no connection. Probably some rumor circulating that the Fed’s going to drop the prime rate a quarter of a point to try to keep the housing market from going in the tank.

  33. 36

    Libertarian spews:

    Roger said, “Now WSDOT has a plan to fine people $200 a month for crossing Lake Washington to work.”

    Were you referring to toll on the 520 bridge, Roger?

  34. 38

    Someone spews:

    All the chinese gluten and protein shipments to the US are a matter of public record and are covered under FOIA. You can obtain the info from http://www.zepol.com or http://www.piers.com if you feel like paying for it.

    Everything is there, the chinese shipper, the commodity shipped, and the US importer. No need to guess about these things. Though the chinese often lie or use front companies, but the US importer will show through in the clear.

  35. 39

    ArtFart spews:

    32 As a man of German ancestry married to an irisher, I find that story funny as hell!

    And believe me, we’re with ya about meat and produce. Only natural beef, Washington-grown chicken, wild-caught fish, and we try our best to buy locally-grown (or at least domestic) veggies. Such as we can tell…you’re right that there’s a need for better labelling requirements. Not just that “NUTRITION FACTS” thingie, but some information as to where the stuff came from, and what most likely crapped on it before it was picked.

  36. 40

    Proud to be an Ass spews:

    “Okay, I’ve lost two long posts in a row now. I give up.”

    Type it up in Word (or sim) first, then cut n’ paste.

  37. 41

    Proud to be an Ass spews:

    “Read the exposé in today’s NYTimes(4/25) about lax OSHA enforcement and the microwave popcorn additives.”

    Aieeeeee! They finally caught up with Orville Reddinbacker!

  38. 42

    social economist spews:

    This sounds like fun. Then China can dump some US dollars on the market, divest some of their Treasury holdings, and let us watch in horror as inflation and a decrease in production/consumption produces what we all loved about the 70s: stagflation. Of course, if we like bringing a knife to a gunfight on principle, by all means….

  39. 43

    ArtFart spews:

    39 “They finally caught up with Orville Reddinbacker!”

    No, they haven’t. He’s been dead for years.

    His spirit lives on in lovely Valparaiso, Indiana, though. A friend of mine recently moved there, and reports that their annual Popcorn Festival is A Big Deal.

  40. 44

    George W. Bush lost the WAR and GBS knows that conservatives politicians and their supporters are TROOP HATERS!! spews:

    Americans siding with Dems against Bush
    “NBC/WSJ poll: Skepticism on Iraq policies reflected in 2008 candidates.”

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18312789

    The charade is over for the conservative TROOP HATERS!!

    The American people no longer support Bush and his handling of the Iraq War.

    Condi-whore is going down syndrome.
    Alberto Liar is going down syndrome.
    Goodling gets immunity.
    Abramoff’s tips keep growing.

    The charges just keep piling up on the Republicans. What the stuuuuuupid conservatives don’t realize is that the Democrats are NOT going to try and Impeach Bush on this or that charge, mark my words, they are setting the truth trap to expose the criminal conspiracy that’s been going on in Washington, DC and that criminal conspiracy has been originating from the White House.

    Nah, nah
    Nah, nah, nah, nah

    Hey, hey, hey — Gooood Bye.

    These last 6 1/2 years have sucked under Bush, but the silver lining to this stormy cloud is that the mondern day conservative movement is DEAD!!

  41. 45

    spews:

    art @37……….this should make you laugh even more. he is german and i am welsh. so the similarities are astounding. it sounds like a bad joke doesn’t it? a german and a celt walk into a bar……..
    your take on food is smart and common sense….it’s what everyone should be doing.go easy on the fish though…really, the mercury levels have been rising.kids shouldn’t eat it at all. and i’ll let you in on a little secret ….there isn’t a chemist around that will touch most fish, peanut butter, maraschino cherries…….the list goes on and on……
    what do you think about my little flag next to ingredients idea?
    can you imagine? it would keep the companies from buying it in the first place because none of us would ever buy products with ingredients from china or other ,even more scary, countries…….think about it.and that, my friend, is the fastest, surest way to regulate companies….and make our food safe.
    it will take the FDA a long long time to change. it’s like turning the titanic……

  42. 46

    Ann Coulter's Vagina spews:

    Ban all food products from China. Period.

    If positive action is not taken on this issue, I simply will not buy any food product from China.

    This has nothing to do with Chinese politics, it just makes logical sense to do what is necessary to protect yourself.

  43. 48

    Yer Killin Me spews:

    38

    Bad idea. If you type a document in Word and then paste it in, every quote mark and special character comes out as a Word character and messes things up. Use Notepad instead. Ugly yeah, but it comes out clean.

  44. 49

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    @46 If you live in some world other than Windoze, you would choose any text editor to compose your message to avoid formatting of any sort.

  45. 50

    ArtFart spews:

    So I get to the office this morning, and while I’m nuking some oatmeal, I take a look at the KIRO News Fax sitting on the lunchroom table. Lo and behold, the big story is that the FDA is now concerned that some of those lovely melamine-laced ingredients may indeed be getting into the human food supply.

    Not that I’m happy to be able to say I told’ja so, but I told’ja so.

    Now, lessee what is says on the label of that oatmeal…

    No mention of gluten of any sort, but hey, what was the origin of the oat bran, or the guar gum, or the calcium carbonate (i. e. what marble quarry donated its rock dust to the cause)?

    Well, the oats themselves are supposed to actually be from Ireland…but it was all whipped together in New Jersey. Dunno if that’s good or bad. I’ll try not to think about it the next time I’m having a Guinness.

  46. 51

    Spineless spews:

    How about this… if we can’t get food imports from China banned, how about mandatory labeling to the effect that the food contains ingredients from China that may or may not been tainted with potentially deadly chemical additives.

    That would effectively kill three birds with one stone. Deal with the China poison situation. Force manufacturers to reconsider their purchasing practices. Teach people to actually read the labels on the food that they buy.

  47. 52

    ArtFart spews:

    51 How about we have a system in which stuff like this gets properly inspected and the purity of what goes into our food better assured…wherever it comes from? If Chinese vendors get blacklisted, the same companies who have been using their products will, if left to their own devices, to to suppliers from other countries, even here in the US, and pressure them just as hard on price. The underlying issue is a half century of erosion of “business ethics” to make “maximizing value to the shareholders” into the ultimate corporate religion.

  48. 53

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    ArtFart@5 W-H-A-a-a-t? Are you some kind of radical?That would interfere with MTR’s producer’s making a profit (Ripping iff the Consumer). No wonder you are a “Librul”. Next, you know, you’ll want the FDA and USDA to, you know, regulate these things, and, horror of horrors, actually hold people accountable for misconduct. (IRONY TAG) HOW UN-American!

  49. 54

    Emil Jenkins spews:

    I don’t have enough money to eat “organic only” food, and when I went to the hippie-nature store to get cat food last night, I was dismayed to find that most of the food there had all the same ingredients as the supermarket stuff. What a sham. Of course the nature-hippies’ animals will eventually start getting sick, too, but they will blame their illnesses on rocket fuel, or George Bush, or “bad chi” or something else.

  50. 55

    Emil Jenkins spews:

    In answer to robin’s #19 post: a business associate of mine had a cat that almost died last November before they switched to dry food, which seems to have saved the cat’s life.