Tuesday, May 22, 2007

More to fear from China

"Under Agriculture Department rules, countries cannot export meat and poultry products to the United States unless the USDA certifies that the slaughterhouses and processing plants have food-safety systems equivalent to those here. Much to its frustration, China is not certified to sell any meat to the United States because it has not met that requirement.

But that has not stopped Chinese meat exporters. In the past year, USDA teams have seized hundreds of thousands of pounds of prohibited poultry products from China and other Asian countries, Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns announced in March. Some were shipped in crates labeled "dried lily flower," "prune slices" and "vegetables," according to news reports. It is unclear how much of the illegal meat slipped in undetected.

Despite those violations, the Chinese government is on track to get permission to legally export its chickens to the United States -- a prospect that has raised concern not only because of fears of bacteria such as salmonella but also because Chinese chickens, if not properly processed, could be a source of avian flu, which public-health authorities fear may be poised to trigger a human pandemic."

Does this make your blood run cold? It does mine.

These words have been lifted from the very trusted source of the Washington Post, a Sunday, May 21 article by Rick Weiss, headed "Tainted Chinese imports common".
This is a deeply alarming piece which describes some of the 289 shipments the FDA has refused entry into the US because of contamination, toxic ingredients and pure fakery. As Weiss points out, the Chinese don't give up when refused entry for their goods. They try again and then again.

This is an epidemic.

Bravo to the Washington Post for running this deeply alarming piece. But the story needs more, more and more exposure than this. We face a dangerous scandal and it is going to take a massive public outrage to make governments confront the issue. They have to see it as an insidious form of terrorism. An attack on what we eat.

I am sure the Chinese people would be devastated to know what some of their manufacturers are doing. I am sure they don't know.
I am sure the Chinese Government will be embarrassed to realise how these exporters are shaming their country.

But the word needs to be spread. Chinese foods must be avoided and, as I have said before, countries affected by this sinister mode of attack should boycott the Olympics.

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