Post by kaima on Jul 25, 2012 11:13:23 GMT -7
you posted another article with no introduction, JJ, another article I am not reading. Hell, I can read things about China at random on my own.
Here is a specific and current story. These boots are important enough to have garnered 62 comments by Alaskans so far:
Xtratufs, now made in China, no longer living up to name
Users of iconic boots say quality has slipped since they've been made in China
By DIANE JEANTET
CORDOVA -- Those accustomed to Xtratuf boots, and they are numerous around here, might have noticed a change in quality lately. If you bought your boots after Christmas, chances are your previously U.S.-made boots are now a product of China.
Beyond the argument of whether or not the company should have left its home in Rock Island, Illinois, for a cheaper Chinese workforce, both customers and the company say the quality of the product has suffered from the move. Word around the harbor is that Xtratufs aren't so tough anymore.
Andrew Moravec, a 29-year-old fishing guide, has been a regular user of Xtratufs for years. He bought his latest pair one month ago and the boot is already decaying.
"I had my first pair of Xtratufs for two and a half years and they were fine," says Moravec, surrounded by fish oil, a knee on the ground getting the flesh out of a halibut's cheek. "I got these a month ago and literally within two weeks they started to separate," he says while inserting his finger right through the brown body of the boot and the white rubber seal above the sole.
Ian Winder, another fishing guide working at the Orca Adventure Lodge during the summer, looks at his colleagues' boots with frustration and jumps in the conversation. "Look at this, the rubber is chipping off, that's ridiculous after a month!" Winder wears his Xtratufs 24/7 throughout the season.
"These are my footwear. I'm going into town in training: I'm wearing these. I'm cleaning fish: I'm wearing these. I'm out on the boat: I'm wearing these. I go everywhere," he says proudly.
A visit to Redden Marine, one of Cordova's distributors of the brand, bore out further indication that the problem goes beyond one or two pairs of boots. Vicky Simpson, manager of the store, didn't need a lengthy explanation for my visit. Mentioning the relocation of the boots' manufacturer was enough to spark her interest.
"People keep bringing back their boots from between three days and three months after getting them," said Simpson as she grabbed two new pairs of boots off a shelf. "You just have to give them a new pair and send those back to the representatives," she says, describing a steady stream of returns. One of the boxes she puts on the store's tables still wears the imprint of a "Made in USA" flag. The other box, smaller and less colorful, shows no sign of origin.
Just by looking at two pairs of 16-inch insulated boots, you can tell that between 2011 and 2012 the recipe has changed. The Chinese one is considerably slimmer on the calf and the rubber of the Illinois-made boot seems more oily than its substitute. Although these differences could be attributed to a good versus bad batch of boots, more annoying problems raised earlier by our two fishing guides are also confirmed.
The store manager starts playing gently with the thin layer of black lining inside the brand new Chinese boot, which almost instantly peels off the rubber. She puts the box aside and says raising her eyebrows: "See, that didn't use to happen."
Determined to verify the trustworthiness of such allegations against one of Alaska's most cherished items of clothing, I called a few stores in Valdez. There, Joe Prax, owner of Prospector Outfitters, tells of similar problems encountered by men working on oil tanks. Their boots too, have been falling apart -- but they weren't before.
"They need to know it's a big deal. The boots are called Xtratuf and not SORT-OF-TUF," says Prax over the phone. The owner of this apparel and outdoor gear store says he decided long ago to share his clients discontent with representatives of the brand. "I have really tried to get that across to them."
So, does this mean Xtratufs devotees should switch for competition? Not quite yet, say Honeywell -- Xtratuf's manufacturers and representatives in the U.S. "We did not change any of the components, we build the boots in the same way," ensures Steve Haynes, a sales representative at NorthStar Sales Group.
The problem seems to be coming from the poor training given to employees in the Chinese plant, rather than the material or technique used. According to the company, both equipment and molds used in the U.S. were moved to China, as well as a management team from the Rock Island factory to oversee training.
"By moving to China, we knew we would be under the microscope, and we goofed with the training of the people making the boots," says Haynes.
Sean O'Brien, Director of footwear at Honeywell, backs up this argument, also mentioning the ageing factory in Illinois that dated back to the 1920s and couldn't "keep up with production demands." And to address the worry of its angry fanbase, Honeywell (aka Xtratuf) ensures it has been working to address the issue by conducting full quality inspections as well as establishing new protocols. www.adn.com/2012/07/24/2554711/xtratufs-now-made-in-china-no.html
Post by JustJohn or JJ on Sept 15, 2012 4:18:35 GMT -7
Chinese-made laptops’ latest feature: Pre-installed viruses
Published: 13 September, 2012, 18:46
Edited: 13 September, 2012, 18:46
By the time you switch on your fresh-out-of-the-box laptop for the first time, it may already be infected with dangerous malware that can either harm you or turn your computer into a pawn in a criminal cyberwar.
This accidental discovery was made by Microsoft’s digital crimes unit during an investigation into Chinese computer manufacturers, many of whom are illegally installing its Windows operating system onto their hardware.
"The cybercriminals are really changing the ways they try to attack you," Richard Boscovich, a former federal prosecutor and a senior attorney in Microsoft's digital crimes unit wrote in the company’s blog.
After Microsoft engineers purchased and tested local laptops, they discovered that 20 percent of them had become infected with viruses or malware at some point between leaving the assembly line and the date of purchase.
"We found malware capable of remotely turning on an infected computer's microphone and video camera, potentially giving a cybercriminal eyes and ears into a victim's home or business," Boscovich said. "Additionally, we found malware that records a person's every keystroke, allowing cybercriminals to steal a victim's personal information.”
Microsoft security officers found that most of the infected computers contained a powerful and malicious software program called Nitol. The malware apparently originated from a notorious server called 3322.org, which in 2009 was reported to be responsible for nearly a fifth of the world’s illegal transactions.
The US software giant filed a lawsuit with a Virginia District Court to block the server. The judge ruled in Microsoft’s favor earlier this week.
Server owner Peng Yong, the defendant in the trial, claimed that he had no knowledge of Microsoft’s findings and denied any responsibility.
"Our policy unequivocally opposes the use of any of our domain names for malicious purposes," Peng told the AP news agency.
In the first few days after the legal rulings, Microsoft says that it has already blocked some 37 million malware connections to 3322.org.
But as one source of malware is snuffed out, another is likely to grow in its place.
Microsoft said that no computer can be guaranteed to be virus-free as long as “unsecure supply chains” continue to exist in China. The country teems with lightly regulated electronics manufacturers, offering plenty of opportunities for fraud. And for the ordinary customer, finding out whether a hacker laid hands on your laptop after leaving the factory can be a tricky task.
"So how can someone know if they're buying from an unsecure supply chain? One sign is a deal that appears too good to be true. However, sometimes people just can't tell, making the exploitation of a broken supply chain an especially dangerous vehicle for infecting people with malware,” Boscovich said.
Post by JustJohn or JJ on Sept 15, 2012 5:10:48 GMT -7
BBC News Business
14 September 2012 Last updated at 02:14 ET
Huawei and ZTE deny US spying charges at hearing
Chinese telecom firms Huawei and ZTE have denied US charges that some of their equipment has been installed with codes to help spying.
They have been accused of using these codes to relay sensitive information back to China.
Concerns over their association with the Chinese government and military have hurt the firms' expansion plans in the US.
The two are among the world's biggest makers of telecom networking equipment.
"Huawei has not and will not jeopardise our global commercial success nor the integrity of our customers' networks for any third party, government or otherwise," Charles Ding, senior vice-president of Huawei, said during a hearing in front of US lawmakers.
A committee of US lawmakers questioned senior executives from the two firms as part on a continuing investigation into their operations.
The committee's chairman, Mike Rogers, said there had been concerns about the role played by the two firms in alleged espionage.
"We have heard reports about back doors or unexplained beaconing from the equipment sold by both companies," he said.
Beaconing is a process that allows networks to self-repair network problems.
However, Zhu Jinyun of ZTE denied these charges, saying there was nothing sinister in the way the firm's equipment functioned.
"What they have been calling back doors are actually software bugs," he said, adding that such glitches were a common occurrence in the sector.
Meanwhile, both firms agreed to supply a list of their company's Communist Party committee members, something the panel said they had previously declined to do
Post by JustJohn or JJ on Oct 11, 2012 4:16:51 GMT -7
Chinese Strawberries Sicken 11,200 German Children
Friday, October 5, 2012 at 12:02PM
It started on September 19. In the East German states of Brandenburg, Saxony, Berlin, Thuringia, and Saxony-Anhalt, a lot of children and adolescents as well as a few adults suddenly fell ill with vomiting and diarrhea. It took about a week before it was officially acknowledged as a foodborne illness. The rate of infections peaked around September 25 – 28, by which time thousands were suffering from gastroenteritis.
The origin was unknown. The cause was unknown. Investigating health authorities on the Federal and State levels didn’t even know if viruses or toxins from bacteria were at fault. They focused on lunches served at school cafeterias, particularly those prepared by the commercial kitchens of Sodexo, a company based in Rüsselsheim, in the State of Hesse.
By October 1, the Health Ministry of the State of Saxony found that about half of the children and kitchen staff tested had been infected with the norovirus, and they thought it might be the “trigger of the current events.” Most kids got through the disease relatively quickly and without complications, but 32 had to be hospitalized. By October 5, over 11,200 people had become ill, according to the Robert Koch Institute—the largest wave of food poisoning ever recorded in Germany.
And on October 5, authorities spoke up. “We have made a major step forward in the investigation,” said Holger Eichele, a spokesman for the Federal Ministry for Food, Agriculture, and Consumer Protection (BMELV). Turns out, a wholesaler had sold contaminated frozen strawberries to commercial kitchens of three companies that made cafeteria food for schools and kindergartens, among them Sodexo. Sources among the food investigators stated that the strawberries had most likely come from China.
When the strawberries were thawed to be used in desserts, they weren’t always fully heated, and the noroviruses, which are particularly resistant to cold and heat, survived. The different thawing processes used in various facilities could explain why infections occurred in some schools but not in others, though all used the strawberries from the same shipment.
Trade relations between Germany and China are of utmost importance to export-dependent Germany. Its exports to China have seen phenomenal growth over the last few years, and the Chinese have become large investors in Germany. So the China-side of the contaminated-strawberries story will be assiduously downplayed.
Post by karl on Oct 11, 2012 6:25:44 GMT -7
I think perhaps this is an example of our efficiencies in international trade and the down side of locations of food production/export. For as exampled, practiced hygiene and production sanitation practices differ in different regions of our known world.
It is not so difficult to track the origin of the suspected food, but very difficult in time allowance of incident to the various handlers in processing the food items for shipping through the chain of events that are from the origin of harvest through to the final location of consumption.
It is always important to carefully wash all fruits and vegetables before eating, and even through this diligence of care, a virus or bacteria may and will slip through.
And yes,,I know from local experience......
Post by JustJohn or JJ on Apr 20, 2013 5:15:32 GMT -7
I'm not going to comment on this one.
BBC News Africa
19 April 2013 Last updated at 13:17 ET
Ghana seizes 'faulty Chinese condoms'
More than 110 million Chinese-made condoms have been seized in Ghana after laboratory tests revealed they were faulty, Ghanaian officials have said.
"There are holes in them and... the condoms burst easily," a Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) spokesman told the BBC.
The condoms were being distributed free as part of an HIV/Aids prevention campaign by the Ghana Health Service.
About 200 million of the faulty condoms are believed to have been imported into the country.
The BBC's Sammy Darko in the capital, Accra, says the condom packaging is silvery white with a red Aids ribbon incorporated into the design and the words "Be Safe" also in red.
The FDA has issued an alert about their safety.
Thomas Amedzro, head of drug enforcement at the FDA, said the condoms had been imported via Kenya from a Chinese manufacturer.
All imported condoms are supposed to be tested by the FDA before distribution, he said.
"Somehow there was a lapse; the batches of the condoms were not submitted as duly required for the appropriate testing to be conducted," he told the BBC's Focus on Africa programme.
Anybody using them could be "exposed to sexually transmitted infections or be saddled with unwanted pregnancies", Mr Amedzro said.
"You may not be able to see the holes with your naked eye but when you look at it under the microscope you can see holes," he said.
They were also not adequately lubricated, the FDA said.
Our reporter says the health service took delivery of the condoms in February this year, but they arrived in the country in the last quarter of 2012.
"Since the alert went out, a number of individuals and organisations have already reported to us that they have stocks, which we are already retrieving," Mr Amedzro said.
A publicity campaign was underway to ensure that all the other unsafe condoms were found, he added.
According to UN figures, an estimated 230,000 people in Ghana, which has a population of 25 million, are living with HIV.
Post by JustJohn or JJ on May 3, 2013 4:51:43 GMT -7
May 3, 2013
Rat Meat Sold as Lamb Highlights Food Fears in China
By CHRISTOPHER BUCKLEY
HONG KONG —
Even for China’s scandal-numbed diners, news that the lamb simmering in the pot may actually be rat took the country’s endless outrages about food hazards into a new realm of disgust.
In an announcement intended to show that the government is serious about improving food safety, the Ministry of Public Security said over the Internet on Thursday that the police had caught traders in eastern China who bought rat, fox and mink flesh and sold it as mutton. But that and other cases of meat smuggling, faking and adulteration that were also featured in Chinese newspapers and Web sites on Friday were unlikely to instill confidence in consumers already queasy over many reports about meat, fruit and vegetables laden with disease, toxins, and banned dyes and preservatives.
The police arrested 63 suspects accused of “buying fox, mink and rat and other meat products that had not undergone inspection,” which they doused in gelatin, red pigment, and nitrates, and sold as mutton in Shanghai and adjacent Jiangsu Province for about $1.6 million, according to the ministry’s statement. The account did not explain how exactly the traders acquired the rats and other creatures.
“How many rats does it take to put together a sheep?” said one typically baffled and angry user of Sina Weibo, China’s Twitter-like service that often acts as a forum for public venting. “Is it cheaper to raise rats than sheep? Or does it just not feel right unless you’re making fakes?”
Residents of Shanghai recently endured the sight of thousands of dead hogs floating down a nearby river, apparently dumped victims of disease in piggeries upstream.
The arrests were part of a nationwide operation since late January to “attack food safety crimes and defend the safety of the dining table,” said the ministry. The police arrested 904 people suspected of selling fake, diseased, toxic or adulterated meat, and broke up 1,721 illicit factories, workshops and shops. Yet the ministry acknowledged that diners still had reason to worry.
In food safety campaigns in past years “some serious problems have been dealt with swiftly and vigorously, but for a variety of reasons, food safety crimes remain serious, and are displaying new circumstances and features,” an unnamed senior official said in the statement.
“For example, there is selling of meat injected with water and meat from animals dead from disease, as well as passing off relatively cheap types of meat as relatively expensive beef and mutton.”
China’s prime minister since March, Li Keqiang, has said that improving food safety was a priority — one of the main grievances of ordinary citizens that he has said his government would tackle. But similar vows by his predecessor, Wen Jiabao, ran up against inadequate resources, buck-passing and muddle among rival agencies, and protectionism by local officials, said Mao Shoulong, a professor of public policy at Renmin University in Beijing, in an interview.
“The United States and Europe can’t eradicate these problems either, but they are even more complicated in China,” said Mr. Mao, who has studied food and pharmaceutical safety regulation.
“Chinese food production has become larger scale and more technological, but the problems emerging also involve using more sophisticated technology to beat regulators and cheat consumers,” he said. “The government’s efforts need to catch up with the scale and complexity of the problems.”
This time, at least, the government gave consumers a stomach-churning glimpse into problems in the meat industry.
The cases described included a company in Inner Mongolia, a northeast region of China, caught with 23 tons of fake beef jerky and unprocessed frozen meat adulterated with flavoring chemicals and swarming with bacteria. Six suspects in Guizhou Province, in southwest China, were caught with 8.8 tons of “toxic chicken feet” adulterated with illegal additives. Chicken feet, steamed or boiled with spices, are a popular dish in parts of China.
The Ministry of Public Security also described cases of traders selling pigs and ducks that had died from disease, and of another perennial problem: pigs injected with water to increase the weight, and price, of the pork sold on the market.
The fraud sometimes had deadly results. In February, police in Shaanxi Province in northwest China arrested a suspect accused of selling a lamb carcass so heavily laced with pesticide that one person died after eating the barbecued meat.
Public discontent about food safety has brought growing pressure on the Chinese Communist Party leadership, especially since 2008, when officials acknowledged that tens of thousands of children were at risk from kidney stones and other organ damage caused by milk powder adulterated with melamine, a chemical used to bamboozle protein tests. At least six infants died from illnesses attributed to the toxin, which sickened over 300,000 children.
Many consumers have recently stopped buying chicken and duck out of worries about avian flu. Parents in many Chinese cities, including Beijing, have become increasingly alarmed by acrid pollution that doctors blame for increased respiratory illnesses.
“Food safety and environmental protection face the same problem that although regulatory capacity has expanded, there’s been no fundamental change for the better,” said Mr. Mao, the professor. “The fact that the police have become involved shows how serious the problems still are.”
Post by kaima on May 3, 2013 10:35:16 GMT -7
ï¿½For example, there is selling of meat injected with water and meat from animals dead from disease, as well as passing off relatively cheap types of meat as relatively expensive beef and mutton.ï¿½
ï¿½Chinese food production has become larger scale and more technological, but the problems emerging also involve using more sophisticated technology to beat regulators and cheat consumers,ï¿½ he said. ï¿½The governmentï¿½s efforts need to catch up with the scale and complexity of the problems.ï¿½
Trust Commies to believe government should interfere with Private Enterprise and protect the citizenry! How un-American can you get?
PS. Injection by water is regulated and allowed (at least in ham) in the US. Our honest meat packers don't adulterate otherwise, however. Have you read about the cheap meat and .... well, here is a quotation ....
Youâ€™ve heard about the â€œpink slime,â€ right? Itâ€™s that meat filler made from slaughterhouse scraps that is treated with ammonia. (Yum!) Last week the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced plans to buy 7 million pounds of it. A federal microbiologist nicknamed the filler â€œpink slime.â€blog.seattlepi.com/hottopics/2012/03/19/who-sells-meat-with-pink-slime-here%E2%80%99s-the-list/
Post by JustJohn or JJ on May 10, 2013 5:51:35 GMT -7
Originally published May 10 2013
Not even good enough for dog food: Imported food from China loaded with chemicals, dyes, pesticides and fake ingredients
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor
(NaturalNews) Do you really know what's in all the food you're eating that's imported from China? If you don't, you're actually in good company: The FDA only inspects 1% - 2% of all the food imported from China, so they don't know either. Even when they inspect a shipment, they rarely test it for heavy metals, pesticides, PCBs or other toxic contaminants.
Mark A. Kastel, Senior Farm Policy Analyst at The Cornucopia Institute, added emphasis to this point as he testified this week in The House Committee on Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia and Emerging Threats, saying, "We don't trust, for good reason, the Chinese to supply ingredients for our dog and cat food. Why should we trust Chinese exporters for the food that we are feeding our children and families?"
It's a good question. Especially when, as Kastel adds, Chinese food is being routinely found to contain "unapproved chemicals, dyes, pesticides and outright fraud (fake food)."
Heavily contaminated food from China
As Natural News has already reported, food from China is frequently found to contain alarming levels of heavy metals (arsenic, cadmium, lead, mercury) and other contaminants. Politically, China is a communist dictatorship where freedom of speech is completely outlawed. Environmental regulations are virtually never enforced. The culture is one of total deception where lying, cheating, stealing or committing fraud to get ahead is considered completely acceptable -- because that's how government is operated there. The moral decay of China is directly reflected in the alarming dishonesty of the food supply. (Yes, a country's food exports will reflect its cultural and political philosophies. Freedom produces healthy food. Oppression and communism produces deceptive, deadly food.)
And yet, even with all this being widely known, Chinese farms are rarely inspected by organic certifiers. "U.S. certifiers are unable to independently inspect farms and assure compliance to the USDA organic food and agriculture standards that are required for export to the U.S." explained Kastel in testimony. "These imports should not be allowed to reach our shore until and unless we have a system in place to assure consumers they are getting what they pay for. Just like U.S. grown organic commodities, the safety of these products must be rigorously overseen by independent inspectors."
Read Kastel's full testimony here.
Counterfeit ingredients are the new norm in China
Also testifying at the hearing was Patty Lovera, the Assistant Director of Washington, D.C.-based Food & Water Watch. The news on food fraud out of China "is a steady stream of controversies ranging from adulteration with counterfeit ingredients like melamine in dairy products, to widespread outbreaks of animal diseases like avian flu, and high levels of pesticide residues," Lovera testified. "Just last week, news reports described a Chinese government campaign to break up a fake meat operation, leading to arrests of more than 900 people accused of passing off more than $1 million of rat meat as mutton."
See Natural News coverage of the fake rat meat scandal here.
You are eating far more food from China than you think
Why does any of this matter? Because you're eating far more food from China than you probably think.
Not only do retailers like Whole Foods sell "certified organic" food grown in China, the vast majority of superfood powders sold in North America use raw materials purchased in bulk from China. Nutritional supplements, herbs and vitamins are often made using materials from China.
Not everything from China is bad, but in our own lab tests here at Natural News, we've been shocked to discover just how frequently products from China are contaminated with metals, chemical solvents and pesticide residues. We have rejected dozens of suppliers in our own search for clean ingredients to use in our product formulations, and we've even had to send back product that showed up at our warehouse and simply didn't meet our stringent quality control requirements. (True fact: We recently had to return several thousand pounds of goji berries to one supplier after discovering the product failed our quality control review.)
But here's the even scarier part in all this:
I am repeatedly told I'm the ONLY person asking these questions
When I talk to suppliers of raw materials, I am repeatedly told that I am the only person asking them for heavy metals tests, pesticide tests and product samples to send to our own lab.
This happens over and over again. From this, I have learned there is virtually NO due diligence being conducted by natural products retailers. Most retailers simply buy and sell, shipping boxes and moving product while turning a blind eye to the truth about what they are buying and selling. They literally do not care whether their products are contaminated with heavy metals. They just want to sell, sell, sell!
Even more shockingly -- and I seem to be the only journalist reporting this jaw-dropping fact -- there are currently NO LIMITS set by the USDA for contamination of certified organic foods. A product may be USDA organic and still contain deadly levels of mercury, arsenic or lead. The USDA does not test or even regulate heavy metals in foods via its organic certified program!
So you can be shopping at a famous natural products retailer and you might pick up a product carrying the USDA Certified Organic logo, thinking, "This is certified healthy and safe by the U.S. government." You are being lied to. That product could be grown in China in a field of mercury runoff from an industrial factory. It could contain ridiculously high levels of mercury, arsenic, PCBs and even chemical solvents. You could be eating pure death while paying a premium for it!
This is not an attack on the USDA, by the way. Their organic certification program is surprisingly good for the scope of what it attempts to accomplish. But understand that USDA organic certifies a process, not a result. At the farm level, it means foods are not intentionally grown with pesticides and herbicides, but it does not say anything whatsoever about heavy metals contamination of food production fields in China.
Massive organic food RAUD
In truth, what's really happening right now on a global scale is a massive organic food fraud. Food is grown in China and certified organic even though no U.S. inspectors even visit the farms. That food is then imported into the U.S. and almost never inspected. It's packaged and sold at top dollar in natural foods retail stores, emblazoned with the USDA Organic label.
But nowhere along the way -- except in extremely rare cases -- is that food ever tested for heavy metals or other contaminants. This is why Mark Kastel correctly states this food can't even be trusted "for dog food," much less to feed yourself and your family.
Make no mistake about it: China is a nation full of immoral, unethical liars and deceivers. (Taiwan, on the other hand, is very different and has a much stronger moral code as well as basic human decency.) Remember: I speak Mandarin Chinese. I've lived in the Chinese culture. I've traveled throughout Asia and even given numerous public speeches to Chinese audiences. At the same time, I've investigated and written about food and food safety for more than a decade. Very few people are as qualified to tell you the truth about what's really in your food coming out of China, and I can tell you that I don't trust it.
In fact, the only way I will eat anything from China is if I subject it to extensive testing and verify that contamination levels are acceptably low. There are some great products out of China that are completely safe and healthy. Certain medicinal mushrooms, for example, are produced in China and are very clean. Some producers of goji berries are very honest and clean. There are no doubt organic growers who are producing very clean products in China, but these would be the exception, not the rule. By default, we must all now assume that anything from China is heavily contaminated.
Almost universally, food grown in North America is cleaner and less contaminated. This isn't true 100% of the time, but usually so.
Toxic Chinese agriculture puts honest U.S. farmers out of business
The sad part about all this is that food from China is economically displacing U.S. and Canadian farmers who are generally far more honest and ethical in their farming practices. So while U.S. farmers are being put out of business for following the rules set by the EPA, FDA and USDA, the Chinese farmers are selling us contaminated, toxic "organic" food frauds produced by breaking all the rules!
That's why I say grow local, buy local and eat local as much as possible. And until China cleans up its act on food contamination, do your best to avoid food from China. I don't trust it unless EVERY BATCH is comprehensively lab tested and those lab tests are made public.
Props to Cornucopia's Mark Kastel for having the courage to lay a lot of this out in congressional testimony. Rest assured Congress will never ask me to testify on food contamination because I would describe a truth so horrifying that people would stop eating for days...
P.S. The reason all your dogs and cats are dying from diabetes and cancer these days is because you're giving them highly toxic pet treats imported from China. They are loaded with toxic solvents and industrial chemicals that cause permanent liver and kidney damage, among other devastating side effects. You can find these toxic, colorful pet treats sold at all the major pet store retailers. They are selling you PET DEATH and making a tidy profit doing so.
Post by JustJohn or JJ on May 26, 2013 4:26:04 GMT -7
France seizes a million doses of fake Chinese aspirin
By Agence France-Presse
Saturday, May 25, 2013 20:45 EDT
Topics: aspirin French customs officers have seized 1.2 million doses of counterfeit aspirin from China, the biggest haul of fake medicines ever in France and the EU, the economy ministry announced Saturday.
The goods, seized May 17 in the northwestern port of Le Havre, were hidden in a cargo of tea that arrived from China, the ministry said in a statement. The powder was mostly glucose and contained no active ingredients.
The fake aspirin was to have been sent to a Spanish company based in the Balearic Islands for distribution in the Iberian peninsula, the south of France and French-speaking Africa, the ministry said.
Post by JustJohn or JJ on Sept 20, 2013 6:27:08 GMT -7
22 Tons of Fake Beef Seized in ChinaThis really makes our stomachs churn.
Written by Erin Mosbaugh | September 16, 2013 at 4:29 pm
This week, police in Xi’an province reported that they had found and seized more than 22 tons of fake beef at a local factory. Get this: the “beef” was actually made from pork (which is considerably cheaper than beef) that had been treated with chemicals including paraffin wax and industrial salts to make it look like it came from a cow. Shanghiist reports that the factory sold more than 1,500 kilos (3,000 pounds) of the fake beef to local markets at around 25 to 33 yuan ($4 or $5) per kilo. Six workshops that were producing the fake beef have been discovered and shut down.
This isn’t the first instance of fake meat being sold in China. In May of this year, Medical Daily reported that 904 people were arrested in China for “meat-related offenses” over three months at the beginning of 2013. Included in these arrests was one gang of meat crooks who made over 10 million yuan ($1.6 million) by selling rat, fox, and mink meat at markets. This makes us wonder what impostor foods we might be eating, which in turn makes us very, very uncomfortable.
Xi'an has a large Muslim community, and the news of pork being passed off as beef has some people worried that they may have accidentally consumed meat from a forbidden animal.
Post by JustJohn or JJ on Jun 1, 2015 4:23:48 GMT -7
The Watermelon You Should Never, Ever Eat
The Watermelon You Should Never, Ever Eat
May 29 • "Food" to Avoid, Health • 881 Views • Comments Off
by DR. MERCOLA
watermelon neverWatermelon fields in eastern China are covered in exploded fruit. Farmers used growth chemicals to make their crops bigger, but ended up destroying them instead.
The farmers used the growth accelerator forchlorfenuron. Even the melons that survived tended to have fibrous, misshapen fruit with mostly white instead of black seeds.
“Chinese regulations don’t forbid use of the substance. It is also allowed in the United States for use on kiwi fruit and grapes … About 20 farmers and 115 acres of watermelon around Danyang were affected … Farmers resorted to chopping up the fruit and feeding it to fish and pigs”.
This may sound like a joke, but it’s real alright. Seems the use of a chemical growth accelerator, forchlorfenuron, has been implicated in the widespread “exploding melon” phenomena.
What is Forchlorfenuron?
Forchlorfenuron is a so-called “plant growth regulator,” registered with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2004 for use on grapes, raisins, and kiwis. According to the EPA Pesticide Fact sheet, the chemical is to be applied to the flowers and/or developing fruit during early post-bloom to improve fruit size, fruit set, cluster weight, and cold storage. The fact sheet explains that the chemical “acts synergistically with natural auxins to promote plant cell division and lateral growth.”
According to MSNBC, the Chinese farmers incorrectly applied forchlorfenuron to the fruit “during overly wet weather and… too late in the season, which made the melons burst.”
Indeed. Melons have been exploding by the acre.
Another article published on May 24 by The Epoch Times, specified that the seeds used were “quality watermelon seeds” imported from Japan. Of the 20 farmers in the affected Chinese province, 10 of them used these imported Japanese seeds. It’s unclear whether all of the farmers whose crops blew up had also used forchlorfenuron.
But ruptured melon-heads are not the most concerning aspect of this story. There’s also the question of consumer safety. Although no specific health hazards are mentioned in any of the articles covering this story, they do allude to the fact that there may be cause for health concerns.
Are Growth Promoting Chemicals Safe to Eat?
“The report quoted Feng Shuangqing, a professor at the China Agricultural University, as saying the problem showed that China needs to clarify its farm chemical standards and supervision to protect consumer health. the report underscores how farmers in China are abusing both legal and illegal chemicals, with many farms misusing pesticides and fertilizers.”
Forchlorfenuron is in fact legal, both in China and in the US. But should it be? According to the EPA pesticide fact sheet, forchlorfenuron is not necessarily harmless, neither to the environment nor to animals and potentially humans. Side effects revealed in animal studies included:
-Increased incidence of alopecia (hair loss)
-Decreased birth weight
-Increased pup mortality
-Decreased litter sizes
They also categorize forchlorfenuron as “moderately toxic to freshwater fish on an acute basis.”
How to Spot Fruit Grown with Growth Accelerating Chemicals
One of the tell-tale signs of a fruit or vegetable that hasn’t been grown by entirely natural means is their inherent lack of flavor. It may look plump and ripe, but once you bite into it, it’s anything but a flavor sensation. This is because while growth enhancers like forchlorfenuron stimulate cell division, making the fruit grow faster, it also drains it of flavor. This is actually rather logical, if you think about it. Flavor is a sign of ripeness, which only comes with time. Many unripe fruits and vegetables are virtually tasteless.
In the case of watermelons, those treated with forchlorfenuron are very large and brightly colored on the outside, but the color of the flesh is more white than deep red. Other telltale signs are white instead of black seeds and fibrous, and/or misshapen fruit. (Note, this is for regular watermelons, which have black seeds. Seedless watermelons typically have tiny white seeds.)
Hormones in Your Fruits and Veggies? You Bet!
This is an area that doesn’t get much press. While many are now aware of the fact that CAFO raised meats are loaded with hormones, few would imagine that fresh produce would be laced with hormone additives as well. But they are. According to Zheng Fengtian, a professor of agriculture from Renmin University, hormones can increase yields by 20 percent or more, and are therefore “widely used.”
Some of these hormones you might never expect to make their way onto your plate, such as oxytocin—a hormone that acts as a neuromodulator in your brain; often referred to as “the love hormone,” or “bonding hormone.” It’s released naturally in large amounts in a woman’s body during childbirth, but has also been synthesized biochemically and is available as a prescription drug to induce labor—and is, apparently, being illegally injected into fruits and vegetables in some countries…
Last summer, an Indian health minister, Dinesh Trivedi, warned about the illegal use of oxytocin in fruits and vegetables in India. Apparently the hormone allows produce to gain weight and ripen sooner. Injected produce also appear plumper and fresher.
According to Trivedi, the hormone is being used on:
FoodSafety.com also reported that the drug, although banned for public sale in India, was widely available from fertilizer and pesticide vendors. Potential side effects of consuming oxytocin-laced produce include:
-Irregular heartbeat -Nausea -Vomiting -Cramping
-Stomach pain -Sterility -Neurotic complications -Nervous breakdowns
Other growth promoting agents used in fruits and vegetables include:
Ethylene (used to ripen mangoes)
Calcium carbide (used on apples, papayas, and guavas)
While ethylene is considered GRAS (generally recognized as safe), calcium carbide “may contain traces of arsenic and phosphorus, both highly toxic to humans,” according to one industry source, and most countries do not allow its use.
Interestingly enough, one of the Chinese farmers whose melons exploded reportedly used a formula containing a mixture of growth enhancers, sweetening agents, and “a calcium solution.” So it’s not clear whether the formula used on the exploding fruits contained calcium carbide in conjunction with the forchlorfenuron. Whatever the case may be, the results are clearly not good.
Still on the Fence about Going Organic?
If you’re still vacillating on the issue of going organic, I hope this information spurs you into action.
If you eat conventionally grown produce, not only are you exposing yourself and your family to a variety of pesticides; you may also get hormones and chemical growth promoters—all of which have the potential to devastate your health, especially that of young children. Remember, conventional produce sold in your local supermarket comes from all over the world! So you cannot brush off this information as being a potential threat affecting just the region in which the produce was grown.
Organic foods also contain higher amounts of nutrients, so you’re getting “more bang for your buck,” when seen from a nutrition standpoint. One four-year long European-Union-funded study found that:
-Organic fruit and vegetables contain up to 40 percent more antioxidants
-Organic produce had higher levels of beneficial minerals like iron and zinc
-Milk from organic herds contained up to 90 percent more antioxidants
Last but not least, if you’re any kind of food aficionado, meaning if you like flavor, organic foods simply cannot be beat. When it comes to produce, your absolute best bet is locally-grown organics. That’s truly the best of both worlds. However, if you can’t find locally grown organics, opt for USDA certified organic, but not imported organic, over the conventionally grown variety. Just be aware that wilted organic produce is not going to provide the nutrition that a fresh one will, even if it’s conventionally grown, so freshness is also key.
There are some exceptions to the all-organic rule, which may be welcome news if you cannot afford to buy everything organic. For more information on which conventionally-grown produce are the safest, please see my previous article 12 Foods You Don’t Have to Buy Organic.
Pay Now, or Pay Later…
My personal view of why you’d want an organic lifestyle is that although you may spend more money on organic food today, your payoff of good health should more than make up for it – and reduce your health care costs in the future. It makes sense to me to invest a little bit more now so I can avoid paying LARGE medical bills later on, but more importantly, I can avoid the physical and mental disability and dysfunction that inevitably follows from a careless, unhealthy lifestyle.
Making sure you’re not being misled by labels in your search for a healthier lifestyle is unfortunately part of this process. However, by educating yourself about what to look for, talking to your grocer, and sharing information with family, friends and neighbors, you can help the movement toward healthier food choices.