Extract from Smallholders Online Newsletter Number 1949 April, 2007
From Sanet-MG Lawrence F. London, Jr.
"I have a dying dog at my feet and I'm wondering just how far 800- odd tons of melamine-contaminated wheat gluten got within our food system. Also, I think this topic is beyond machinists and engineers, it has to do with people.
I wasn't going to post about this at all, but some new information has surfaced and I think its about time.
For several weeks I noticed that my dog had been drinking excessive amounts of water combined with frequent urination and weight loss. He was getting old, so I really didn't think a lot about it, even my vet was mystified. That was, until this time last week. Shortly after feeding my dog a can of Alpo Prime Cuts in Gravy he fell extremely ill. Within a matter of 2-3 hours he was shivering, urinating, and throwing up his dinner. Sometimes all at the same time.
About midnight I called the telephone number on the back of the Alpo can. I expected to get an answering machine, but was able to contact their security booth. During my conversation with the security manager he stated the following: "I have fielded literally hundreds of calls from people of all walks of life whose pets are severely ill". Meanwhile, the message on their main number said in part: "Mighty Dog pouch products are the only products being voluntairly recalled. No other Purina products are affected. It is still safe to feed these products, including Alpo canned" (many other brands listed) (I have a full, dated recording of the message if it is of use to anyone).
Things got progressively worse. At 2am I called the vet and asked for guidance. First thing that morning I took him to the vet hospital for observation and blood work. The blood work showed that he was in renal failure. After leaving him at the vet hospital for observation, I went home to get to the bottom of what was making my dog sick. After repeated phone calls to Purina over a period of three days, during which I provided the date and plant codes, I noticed that Purina began recalling part of its Alpo line. All the Alpo product on my shelves was in the recall.
To make a long story short, blood tests show that he is getting progressively worse and will not make it. As we speak he is lying at my feet, dying, because I poisoned him. I poisoned him with Alpo Prime Cuts in Gravy that was adulterated with melamine.
Why am I posting? I don't expect or want sympathy, I don't want a bunch of "I'm so sorry" posts. What I want is to see some action!
Purina stonewalled, denying that Alpo brand products used the adulterated wheat gluten. I had to go through their rent-a-cop to figure out what the hell was going on.
The FDA stonewalled, refusing to release the name of the US distributer, ChemNutra, until a blogger found it by digging through the FDA records. Not only that, but the FDA and the manufacturers were reactive, waiting for the body count to rise before "voluntarily" recalling their product.
It the FDA TWO DAYS to update its website to include the Alpo recall. It has taken the FDA over three weeks to begin to get this situation under control, but they still don't know they have all the adulterated product in the recall, and the US distrubuter refuses to release his customer list to the public.
According to Del Monte, who bought some of the Chinese wheat gluten, it was sold as food grade product. ChemNutra, the US distributer, claims it was sold for animal use only and refuses to release its customer list. Are they stonewalling too?
Canada is one of the world's largest producers of wheat and wheat products. Talk about carrying coals to Newcastle...
According to Dr. Stephen Sundlof, director of the FDA's center for vetrinary medicine, melamine was found in quantities of up to 6.6% in the wheat gluten from China. James Popp, president of the Society of Toxicology says: "A study on dogs in 1953 fed them 30,000 parts per million of melamine for one year and "nothing happened," Not quite! If you want to know what really happened, why not read a summary of the data? Oh, and it was 1955, not 1953. Get your facts straight, Popp!
The wheat gluten came from China, which has NO food safety regulations. What other kinds of food are being imported from China which are in the human food chain? I know of one, its the Mandarin Oranges in my cupboard! Well, they were in my cupboard. They're in the trash now.
I wonder what else I've been eating that comes from a place where DDT and fertilizing with human waste is allowed and safety regulations are non-existant. America has, by trial-and-error and a massive body count, established itself as a safe food producer. By buying product from China we're short- circuiting over 100 years of experience in the food safety business and putting the entire population at risk. Don't believe me? If you want to ask my dog you had better be quick about it.
The Chinese are selling baby formula to each other that has no nutritional value and is the cause of death of several babies in China. How can they be expected to produce safe food for export when the can't ensure the quality of their baby food?
To conclude, I want to leave you with this thought: We've spent trillions upon trillions of dollars blasting terrorists in countries you and I will never set foot in. Meanwhile, we can't provide adequate hurricane relief or ensure that our dog food is safe.
How are we more secure?"
Editor's Comment: I wonder if Alpo Prime Cuts in Gravy has been checked out in the UK?
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