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Raw almonds

Consumer groups join forces to reverse pasteurization ruling for raw almonds

Monday, October 22, 2007
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com (See all articles...)
Tags: raw almonds, almonds, food safety

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(NewsTarget) The U.S. government is once again working closely with powerful corporations to knowingly deliver a nutritionally deficient food supply to the American people. This most recent example concerns the new rules by the Almond Board of California (ABC) and backed by the USDA to mandate the pasteurization of all commercially-grown almonds in California with substances that include highly toxic propylene oxide (PPO). As reported by the Health Freedom Foundation, propylene oxide is so toxic that it was "...banned by both the National Hot Rod and American Motorcycle Racing Associations, where it had been used as a fuel before being deemed too dangerous."

NewsTarget has reported on this story for several months, urging consumers to help stop the ruling from going into place, but corporations won the initial round. Since September 1st, all the almonds commercially grown in California have been pasteurized or sanitized through either heat treatments or toxic chemical treatments.

Both the Organic Consumers Association (www.OrganicConsumers.org) and the Cornucopia Institute (www.Cornucopia.org) have strongly opposed this almond pasteurization requirement. Today, the Health Freedom Foundation (www.HealthFreedom.net) announced a grassroots consumer action campaign to petition the USDA to suspend these almond pasteurization rules for 180 days. NewsTarget supports this petition and urges all American consumers to support this 180-day suspension of the killing of California almonds by clicking HERE to send an online message to your legislative representatives in Washington.

NewsTarget has published a CounterThink cartoon on this subject called The Killing of California Almonds. Feel free to share the cartoon or post it on your website (along with a link back to NewsTarget).

Today NewsTarget has also posted an exclusive video interview on the subject of almond pasteurization fraud. In the video, we interview Seth Leaf, co-founder of LivingNutz (www.LivingNutz.com), a small manufacturer of hand-made raw, sprouted nut products that has been caught up in the chaos of this bewildering decision by the Almond Board of California. Click here to view this video interview on YouTube.

Read NewsTarget's previous article coverage of this topic in the following stories:

Food Scam: Almond Board of California to falsely label pasteurized almonds as "raw"

Cornucopia Institute reveals agribusiness conspiracy to mislead consumers over almonds

Almond Board of California changes its story following NewsTarget article

Fraudulent marketing, illegal labeling

The Almond Board of California is right now conspiring with the USDA to allow the fraudulent labeling of almonds that are being sold to consumers. How? Pasteurized, fumigated or cooked almonds will be openly labeled as "raw" almonds. As you can see from previous stories published by NewsTarget on this issue, the Almond Board of California recognizes no substantial difference between cooked and raw almonds, and thus does not see any need to distinguish between them on product packaging.

I believe this position is an example of outright consumer marketing fraud designed to misinform consumers and protect the sales of pasteurized almonds by intentionally mislabeling them as "raw." No reasonable person would dare say that cooked eggs are the same as raw eggs, or that cooked lettuce is the same as raw, fresh lettuce, but somehow the Almond Board of California continues to pretend that cooked almonds are virtually identical to raw almonds. The advocating of this position is, in my opinion, a violation of truth in labeling laws and nothing short of a corporate-masterminded conspiracy to intentionally hoodwink consumers by selling them an inferior (cooked) product that is knowingly mislabeled.

Raw almonds, for the record, are vastly superior to cooked almonds in terms of nutrition. They contain more anti-cancer phytonutrients, more usable protein and healthier fats. Once these elements are exposed to high temperatures (through pasteurization or other methods), these nutritional qualities are irreversibly degraded, rendering the almond deficient in the nutrients it had when it was first harvested. This degradation of health-enhancing nutrients has the result of contributing to nutritional deficiencies and imbalances in North American consumers -- people who are already in a state of chronic nutritional deficiency due to the consumption of other processed foods.

It also sets a precedent for the intentional mislabeling of food products being purchased by North American consumers. The FDA is already on record stating that irradiated foods should not be truthfully labeled as such since the label might "confuse" and "misinform" consumers (who are apparently too stupid to understand what irradiation really means, the FDA believes). Now, with the USDA backing this fraudulent labeling decision by the Almond Board of California, we have two dominant government agencies (the FDA and USDA) who are both in favor of the blatant mislabeling of food products in order to keep consumers ignorant of how their foods are really being processed and degraded.

Two issues need to be reversed

There are really two important issues here that need to be reversed in order for the almond industry to regain any real credibility with consumers:

1) The ruling requiring the mandatory pasteurization or fumigation of all almonds needs to be rescinded. Raw almonds represent no legitimate health risk whatsoever to consumers. (There's far more e.coli in meat products, and you don't see the U.S. government banning raw meat, do you?)

2) The labeling of pasteurized almonds as "raw" needs to be stopped. This is fraudulent, misleading labeling and it has the effect of causing consumers to realize they cannot trust ANY almonds, regardless of what the package says. After all, if pasteurized is labeled as "raw" then what does "organic" mean on the package? What does anything mean? The words on the package apparently have no meaning at all; at least not one that regular people would understand and agree to. This will ultimately lead to devastating financial losses among U.S. almond growers. In my interview with Seth Leaf, for example, we learn that Seth's company, Living Nutz (www.LivingNutz.com), now has to purchase raw almonds from Spain!

The Almond Board of California has, in my opinion, lost its marbles. Can we interject some sanity into this issue and pressure the ABC and USDA to restore integrity to the U.S. almond industry? We'll know soon enough. In the mean time, you can play an important role in these three ways:

Action items

1) Contact your representatives in Washington and call, write or fax them a letter telling them strongly oppose this fraudulent action by the ABC and USDA.

2) Share the cartoon: The Killing of California Almonds.

3) Share the video interview: Seth Leaf speaks out about pasteurized "raw" almonds.

Thank you for your effort. Together, we have a legitimate shot at bringing the almond industry back to its senses and restoring truly raw almonds to the marketplace. And if this doesn't fly, NewsTarget will be announcing a global boycott of almonds grown in the United States (and asking you to join along...)

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About the author:Mike Adams (aka the "Health Ranger") is a best selling author (#1 best selling science book on Amazon.com) and a globally recognized scientific researcher in clean foods. He serves as the founding editor of NaturalNews.com and the lab science director of an internationally accredited (ISO 17025) analytical laboratory known as CWC Labs. There, he was awarded a Certificate of Excellence for achieving extremely high accuracy in the analysis of toxic elements in unknown water samples using ICP-MS instrumentation. Adams is also highly proficient in running liquid chromatography, ion chromatography and mass spectrometry time-of-flight analytical instrumentation.

Adams is a person of color whose ancestors include Africans and Native American Indians. He's also of Native American heritage, which he credits as inspiring his "Health Ranger" passion for protecting life and nature against the destruction caused by chemicals, heavy metals and other forms of pollution.

Adams is the founder and publisher of the open source science journal Natural Science Journal, the author of numerous peer-reviewed science papers published by the journal, and the author of the world's first book that published ICP-MS heavy metals analysis results for foods, dietary supplements, pet food, spices and fast food. The book is entitled Food Forensics and is published by BenBella Books.

In his laboratory research, Adams has made numerous food safety breakthroughs such as revealing rice protein products imported from Asia to be contaminated with toxic heavy metals like lead, cadmium and tungsten. Adams was the first food science researcher to document high levels of tungsten in superfoods. He also discovered over 11 ppm lead in imported mangosteen powder, and led an industry-wide voluntary agreement to limit heavy metals in rice protein products.

In addition to his lab work, Adams is also the (non-paid) executive director of the non-profit Consumer Wellness Center (CWC), an organization that redirects 100% of its donations receipts to grant programs that teach children and women how to grow their own food or vastly improve their nutrition. Through the non-profit CWC, Adams also launched Nutrition Rescue, a program that donates essential vitamins to people in need. Click here to see some of the CWC success stories.

With a background in science and software technology, Adams is the original founder of the email newsletter technology company known as Arial Software. Using his technical experience combined with his love for natural health, Adams developed and deployed the content management system currently driving NaturalNews.com. He also engineered the high-level statistical algorithms that power SCIENCE.naturalnews.com, a massive research resource featuring over 10 million scientific studies.

Adams is well known for his incredibly popular consumer activism video blowing the lid on fake blueberries used throughout the food supply. He has also exposed "strange fibers" found in Chicken McNuggets, fake academic credentials of so-called health "gurus," dangerous "detox" products imported as battery acid and sold for oral consumption, fake acai berry scams, the California raw milk raids, the vaccine research fraud revealed by industry whistleblowers and many other topics.

Adams has also helped defend the rights of home gardeners and protect the medical freedom rights of parents. Adams is widely recognized to have made a remarkable global impact on issues like GMOs, vaccines, nutrition therapies, human consciousness.

In addition to his activism, Adams is an accomplished musician who has released over a dozen popular songs covering a variety of activism topics.

Click here to read a more detailed bio on Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, at HealthRanger.com.

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