04-24-2007, 07:24 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: United States
This is getting ridiculous
Honestly. I'm just numb when I read this stuff anymore. All the food contaminations, the dog food I've had to throw away because more and more keep turning up on the recall list - foods, mind you, that we ASSUMED were safe because they SWORE they weren't part of the recall - and hearing almost every day about people sickened and even dying from tainted foods.
Something really weird is going on. And obviously more of our own food is affected.
Salvaged pet food contaminated with melamine was also fed to hogs in as many as six states, federal health officials said. It was not immediately clear if any of the hogs entered the food supply for humans.
Food safety officials said hogs at farms in California, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Utah and possibly Ohio ate the contaminated products. Hogs at some of the farms — it wasn’t immediately clear which — have been quarantined.
“At this point, I don’t have a definitive answer other than to say that the issue is being addressed,” Stephen Sundlof, the FDA’s chief veterinarian, told reporters when asked if any of the hogs had entered the food supply.
The California Agriculture Department said separately it was trying to contact 50 people who bought pork that may have come from pigs fed food containing melamine. The state’s health department recommended humans not consume the meat, but said any health risk was minimal.
There is little research on melamine’s effect on humans, according to World Health Organization, but the chemical has been studied in animals for its risk of kidney problems and cancer. The WHO does not classify the chemical as a carcinogen for people.
Thousands of U.S. hogs might be affected by the investigation of livestock feed contaminated with melamine. A poultry farm also may be involved.
The FDA also said it planned to begin testing a wide variety of vegetable proteins at firms that imported the ingredients to make everything from pizza dough to infant formula, and protein shakes to energy bars. The ingredient list includes wheat gluten, corn gluten, corn meal, soy protein and rice bran.
Investigators have found melamine in at least two imported Chinese vegetable proteins used to make pet foods. The chemical likely was used to skew analyses that measured the protein content of the ingredients.
“We’re going to target firms that we know are receiving imported products,” said David Acheson, chief medical officer of the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. “The goal is obviously to sample as much as we can.”
More than 100 brands of pet food have been recalled. FDA officials have confirmed 16 deaths of cats and dogs from kidney failure and have received more than 15,000 reports of illnesses.
The agency said on a call with reporters late on Tuesday that it had no intention of banning imports of wheat gluten, rice protein or similar proteins from China.
“We believe the safety net is in place to make sure that no additional products are going to get into the commerce of the United States,” said David Elder, director of FDA’s enforcement office.