USDA caves to food industry pressures, approves three new toxic meat preservatives
|Category :||Topic :|
|Regulatory Crisis Management (138)||Health Canada & other FDA Abuses (182)|
|Date Posted :||Source Date :|
|Apr 5, 2013||Apr 5, 2013|
|Source Author||Source Description|
by Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
After intense lobbying by Kraft Foods Global Inc. and Kemin Food Technologies, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), has agreed to reverse existing regulations that prohibit the use of three toxic meat preservatives.
According to Courthouse News Service (CNS), sodium benzoate, sodium propionate, and benzoic acid will now be permissible for use in preserving and treating meat and poultry products, despite having been previously banned. FSIS has long been of the persuasion that major food corporations would attempt to use such additives to "conceal damage or inferiority in meat and poultry," but the agency's view has apparently changed.
After Kraft submitted its own company-funded trials claiming that the three preservative chemicals are allegedly safe, and that they supposedly cannot be used to disguise sub par meat and poultry products, the USDA suddenly changed its mind about them. This is all according to its mouthpiece, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which made the announcement recently about the change.
"Kraft submitted data collected from its in-plant trials and from scientific studies that show that these substances do not conceal damage or inferiority, or make products appear better or of greater value than they are under the proposed conditions of use," says FSIS.
Factory food companies commonly use chemical preservatives, anti-microbials to mask inferior meat
This is a nice story, but according to admissions made by both Kraft and Kemin, use of these additives will indeed be used to disguise inferior meat and poultry products. According to CNS, the two companies admittedly petitioned FSIS to allow use of the chemicals in liquid form to kill pathogens like Listeria monocytogenes, which typically only exist in tainted meat derived from factory farms.
Industrial agriculture is a filthy business, especially when animals are involved. Rather than have access to pasture and the outdoors, cows and chickens from factory farms live most, if not all, of their lives in confinement, where they wallow in their own feces, and sometimes even in the rotting carcasses of other dead animals. As a result, such animals become ill, and their systems infected with harmful pathogens that must be eliminated before human consumption.
The reason companies like Kraft and Kemin exist and thrive is because high-profit factory farms exist and thrive. And the only way these food corporations can "safely" sell their factory-farm food products to the public is to kill it, sanitize it, and smother it in antimicrobial agents like sodium benzoate, sodium propionate and benzoic acid.
So to claim that their goal in seeking approval for the three chemicals is not to conceal second-rate meat products is simply a lie. Low-grade meat products from squalid factory farms have to be disguised, otherwise the public would never purchase them.
Beyond this, the chemical substances in question are not even safe. Sodium propionate has been linked to causing gastrointestinal upset and respiratory problems, while sodium benzoate can cause DNA damage and promote the formation of cancer cells. And benzoic acid, which is often added to processed foods, can promote the development of asthma and hyperactivity, particularly in children.
"The continued ingestion of certain chemicals has been linked to cancer, fatigue, memory-impairment, imbalanced motor-function, diabetes, thyroid problems, confusion and far more," says Creative Bioscience about food preservatives and additives. "Such food additives can stunt or stall weight loss and even cause more pounds to add on."
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