Originally published September 20 2008
Former Pet Food Contaminant Melamine Now Surfacing in Baby Formula
by Susan Thixton
(NaturalNews) Melamine is raising its ugly head again, this time reports are saying traces of melamine were found in a Chinese brand of baby formula. The Canadian Broadcasting Company is reporting (September 11, 2008)that 14 babies developed kidney stones and were all from the northwestern Gansu province of China. Melamine is known to cause kidney stones. Other cases have been reported in six other provinces all across China. One Chinese baby has reportedly died.
As millions of pet owners are aware, melamine was discovered to be part of the cause of the 2007 pet food recall that resulted in the death and illness of thousands of pets. Now, babies are at risk. The FDA reports that U.S. brands of formula are safe; the CBC reports that the U.S. is at risk from the sale of Chinese brands of baby formula, "particularly in cities with large populations of Chinese immigrants." Currently there is no information on the FDA website regarding the risk potential or recall information of any baby formula sold in the U.S.
It just doesn't seem to stop -- worries of contamination or mislabeled products from China abound. Whether mislabeling or incomplete product information is intentional or due to lack of proper quality control, the results can still be catastrophic. China executed the former head of their food quality administration last year; who will be held responsible for this, and how? I think the majority of U.S. consumers continue to be concerned -- what is next from China?
The FDA reports that only 3% of all imports into the United States are inspected. They continue to tell U.S. consumers they do not have the funding nor the manpower to properly inspect every shipment that comes across our borders. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection reports there are 327 official ports of entry in the U.S. Just a quick thought, if the FDA doesn't have the manpower to properly inspect imports at all of the 327 U.S. ports of entry, couldn't they close some of these ports to better man and inspect the others?
It's been crystal clear to pet owners for over a year now that a pet food and pet treat 'country of origin' labeling requirement needs to be initiated. When will the FDA get this? How many pets need to die? How many lawsuits need to be filed? And now there is the worry of Chinese baby formula. It's time -- a country of origin labeling law needs to be implemented 'yesterday'. Every U.S. consumer deserves to know the country of origin of every product they purchase, and every ingredient contained in that product.
This sad incident proves that melamine is still lurking in Chinese products not intended to contain melamine. For pet owners: please call your pet food manufacturer and ask if any of the ingredients used in the food originates outside the U.S. Many pet food ingredients are imported from known safe countries such as Canada and New Zealand, many other ingredients are imported from known at risk countries like China. Until the law requires pet food and pet treats to provide you with this information on the label, you will need to continue to check on every product your pet consumes.
About the authorSusan 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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