Sampson napping on his favorite rug

Sampson napping on  his favorite rug
happy, happy, happy

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Let's Demand Safe Food For Ourselves & Our Pets!

Remember the pet food recall, brought about by the illness and deaths of many pets due to poisonous, chemically-tainted ingredients imported from China? Our federal government really needs to be prodded to actually do something to prevent this from happening again. We are the only ones who can do the prodding.

At this very moment, there is a so-called website for public comment about Docket 2007n-0487 (regarding the FDA's need to regulate the processing and labeling of pet and human food ingredients). I say "so-called" because it has been inoperable and inaccessible since its supposed inception. Do a web-search for Docket 2007n-0487 and you'll find plenty of comments ... from people who want to access the site but can't; you'll find the site address there, too. I just have to wonder if the site is a planned failure or hoax being perpetrated on the public -- you know, maybe the industry or importers want it to be inoperable; or, maybe it's just another government blunder. I just finished writing a letter (yes, I know that takes more time and seems like a hassle, but it feels important to do) to my two U.S. senators and U.S. congressman, requesting that the FDA institute effective regulations regarding importation, processing, and labeling of food ingredients for pet and human food products.

Our pets have been the canaries in the mine-shaft ... alerting us, via their illnesses and deaths, to the dangers of foods and additives imported from China. Last summer, there was a comprehensive, revealing magazine article I read while in a doctor's waiting room; it was either TIme or Newsweek ... I think it was Time. It had photographs I will never forget -- about the thousands of Chinese "factory" workers (folks, we would call these places something other than "factories") who are lined up like robots in long lines that stretched on and on, uniformed and hooded and masked from head to toe, as they stood there, very close to one another, working on whatever product line to which they were assigned; their uniforms were color-coded by product; each photo showed a different product and its workers. The article said that they live in dormitories above the work area and one photograph showed massive amounts of garbage that had been thrown out the little dorm windows to the building surface below. I had to wonder how any product made under these conditions -- where everything was being done as cheaply as possible -- could be trusted to be safe or reliable. Also, in my mind, these are inhumane conditions under which workers should not be forced to work (and live) ... all so that we in the US can see "made in China" on practically every product we buy at our favorite stores? But, see, that label doesn't appear on food product ingredients.

I would like to see the imports from China stopped or restricted ... and, most definitely, regulated!

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