Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Here we go again

And this time it isn't because of China:

Washington, D.C. (AHN) - U.S. Health officials have found traces of the toxic chemical melamine in one sample of infant formula and in several samples of medical supplements for the elderly, but say they pose no health threat.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration scientists performed a second test on the formula sample that tested positive. The first test found a melamine level of 137 parts per billion (ppb) and the other found levels of 140 ppb.

While a level of 250 ppb or less is considered a trace amount, when it comes to infant formula, or food for babies, there is controversy. Some experts say no amount of melamine is considered safe for infants, while others say those levels are safe.

Since September, the FDA has expanded testing of food to assure Americans that the food supply was safe. They also found trace amounts of melamine in several medical supplements for the elderly, but say there is no health threat.

Melamine is a chemical used in the manufacture of plastic, but it has been wrongfully used in China as an additive to milk, and other food products, to boost protein levels. Many babies in China were sickened, and some died, when the toxic melamine caused kidney stones and other problems.

Melamine is a toxic chemical that can damage kidneys, and cause other health problems, including death.

FDA officials have not identified the manufacturer of the infant formula, but have said that the infant formula was not made with any Chinese ingredients.

However, melamine has been found in animal feed, and also in some fertilizers, when applied to crops, it can stay in the soil and build up.

The Washington Post:

"The levels that we are detecting are extremely low," said Dr. Stephen Sundlof, director of the FDA's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. "They should not be changing the diet. If they've been feeding a particular product, they should continue to feed that product. That's in the best interest of the baby."

Melamine is the chemical found in Chinese infant formula _ in far larger concentrations _ that has been blamed for killing at least three babies and making at least 50,000 others ill.

Previously undisclosed tests, obtained by The Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act, show that the FDA has detected melamine in a sample of one popular formula and the presence of cyanuric acid, a chemical relative of melamine, in the formula of a second manufacturer.

Separately, a third major formula maker told AP that in-house tests had detected trace levels of melamine in its infant formula.

The three firms _ Abbott Laboratories, Nestle and Mead Johnson _ manufacture more than 90 percent of all infant formula produced in the United States.

The FDA and other experts said the melamine contamination in U.S.-made formula had occurred during the manufacturing process, rather than intentionally.


Steve Bates said...

So... which medical supplements for the elderly? Is it the one I've always called "In-Sewer"?

ellroon said...


God knows. I feel our entire food production has been contaminated. I know America went through what China is going through. The novel 'The Jungle' by Upton Sinclair helped change all that and we got the FDA established. China's political system will not allow such things to be said so it depends on whether their citizens will rise up and say,"ENOUGH!"

I am trying to not buy any food item from China. I wasn't aware how difficult that is nowadays....