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FDA Alert: Detention of Chinese Imports

Monday, November 17, 2008 by: Susan Thixton
Tags: food safety, health news, Natural News

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(NewsTarget) The FDA issued an import alert, 11/12/08, detaining ALL milk products, milk derived ingredients and finished food products containing milk from China due to the presence of melamine. Close to two years after melamine tainted wheat, rice, and corn protein additives began to make thousands of pets sick across the US, the chemical continues to make news around the world; bad news.

All milk products, all milk derived ingredients, and all finished food products containing milk imported from China are being detained without physical examination nationwide. Many types of human foods from bakery products, cereals, cheese, ice cream, soft drinks and candy are being detained for testing. ALSO pet foods; the alert list of pet products includes: pet cat foods, pet dog foods, pet fish foods, other pet foods, laboratory animal feeds, pet and laboratory animal foods, byproducts for animals, dairy byproducts for animals, and animal waste feed products imported from China. This alert would include milk derived pet food ingredients shipped to the U.S. from China. http://www.fda.gov/ora/fiars/ora_import_ia99...

The FDA alert states although the melamine milk contamination started in infant formula, "these contaminated milk components appear to have been dispersed throughout the Chinese food supply chain." The FDA has detected melamine and cyanuric acid in a number of milk products including candy and beverages. "In addition, information received from government sources in a number of countries indicates a wide range and variety of products from a variety of manufacturers have been manufactured using melamine-contaminated milk or milk-derived ingredients," "Reports of contamination have come from more than thirteen countries in Asia, Europe, and Australia, in addition to the United States."

Time Magazine online reported on 11/4/08 that the Chinese government continues to downgrade the severity of the melamine problem. http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,859.... Melamine tainted pet food in 2007; baby formulas, candy, and fish feed to mention a few in 2008. Experts state "If those lessons don't sink in, then expect a Chinese Product Safety Scandal of 2009."

The Epoch Times, a world-wide newspaper reported on November 6, 2008 of Lin He, a geneticist and member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences speech to the Summit Medical Academy; believing melamine contaminated foods to be "one of the most important factors resulting in the soaring number of birth defects in China."

Not melamine related, but China related: Also on November 6, 2008, the FDA announced it seized 11 lots of contaminated heparin from Celsus Laboratories in Cincinnati, Ohio; all imported from China. The FDA has notified Japanese, Canadian, Australian, European Union, and other international authorities of shipments of contaminated heparin from Celsus.

The Ministry of Consumer Affairs in Trinidad & Tobago posted a full page advertisement in the Sunday November 9, 2008 newspaper warning consumers about food products from China and Japan. "The ad mentioned ham and sausages manufactured by Itoham Foods were under suspicion of Cyanide contamination. In addition, it noted that Nissin Cup Noodles, manufactured by Nissin Food Products Co., was suspected of being tainted with Melamine, the industrial chemical at the heart of the Chinese milk scandal." http://www.antiguasun.com/paper/?as=view&sun...

Hong Kong reported on November 12, 2008 "food inspectors have found fish feed imported from China contaminated with high levels of melamine." http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/11/12/asia/...

The threat of melamine continues worldwide. Consumers are left with few options to protect their families from contaminated Chinese imports. While it's only a partial help, the UPC or Bar Code number listed on product labels gives consumers limited Country of Origin information. The first three digits of a bar code indicates the location country of the company which produces the product; not necessarily the country where the product was manufactured. As an example, products that are manufactured by a Chinese company in China have a bar code that begins with 690 thru 695. However, a US company whose products are manufactured in China would have a bar code that begins with 000 019; the codes for the US and Canada. The first three digits of the bar code number indicate the country location of the company headquarters. Also, foods that would contain ingredients from China would not be noted by the bar code. Wikipedia provides the following list of Country Codes: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_GS1_cou....

Wishing you and your pet the best,

Susan Thixton

About the author

Susan Thixton has an international pet people following providing dog and cat lovers a trusted source for pet food and pet food ingredient information. She's been called courageous, perseverant, even "the Caped Crusader for Pets" for her 16 year study of pet food. Susan Thixton is the author of hundreds of pet industry articles and the 2006 released book Truth About Pet Food (currently being updated for a second edition). She developed and publishes the pet product consumer magazine Petsumer Report and is a frequent speaker and radio guest all over the U.S. and Canada with more than 70 appearances in the last 2 years.
If you are looking for straight forward pet food information that can have an almost immediate impact on your pet's health - subscribe to the free newsletter, and subscribe to Petsumer Report to see reviews of close to 700 dog and cat foods and treats (adding 40+ each month). Susan Thixton's 'truth' will help you find a safer, healthier dog or cat food that could add years to your pet's life. http://www.TruthAboutPetFood.com

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