This is not intended to be in any way partisan or political (otherwise I would throw it over on The Daft Democrat), but since it affects our children, it is worth noting here. Â The FDA has shown all to much a willingness to throw the health and safety of our food supply under the proverbial bus in efforts to protect businesses and “assure” the public there is “no risk” in places that the amount of risk is actually indeteriminable or worse.
I have covered rGBH/rBSTÂ (lots of times) as well as Food Cloning, in the past so I won’t rehash that and other stories like it. Â When you consider that of theÂ 50,845 children affected by this in China over 1000 babies are still in the hospital from melamine poisoningÂ (and 4 have died), it was a GOOD thing that the FDA decided to start testing infant formula here. Â It is not a good thing howver, that after finding melamine in at least one baby formula product, tries to sweep it under the rug as “no big deal.” Â As some consumer advocates have already pointed out:
The FDA’s earlier determination that 250 ppb of melamine was a trace amount was intended for foods other than infant formula, said Sonya Lunder, a senior analyst with the Environmental Working Group.
“This is out of step with what the FDA said earlier,” she told Reuters.
This is because formula is the sole source of nutrition at that age, so that “trace” amount is as a percentage a much higher part of an infants intake. Â Also, what seems to be missing from the story is that, melamine is often added to falsely show higher protein counts in product, so that means there is actually not as much protein as the product(s) claim. Â And, as sciencebase notes:
There is no reason to imagine that those unscrupulous enough to add a toxic compound to baby formula milk would worry about contaminants, such as cyanuric acid, that might be found in the raw material. Indeed, even if melamine toxicity were not an issue and truly was an inert substance added to spike the protein readings in quality control tests, then any one of the impurities associated with rough melamine manufacture may be a major cause for concern.
I understand the FDA not wanting to start a nationwide panic, but there is nothing that is insignificant about this issue. Â We don’t really need to wait until babies die here from melamine poisoning before we do something about it, do we? Â The FDA needs to be on the side of the consumer, not protecting businesses.