The contaminated Chinese protein powder that has sickened some 17,000 American dogs and cats has now turned up in the human food supply. The U.S. Department of Agriculture admits that 6,000 pigs and more than 2.5 million broiler chickens were sold for human consumption after being fed contaminated pet food.
This was a disaster waiting to happen. After all, animal feed mills are generally regarded as dumping grounds for all kinds of garbage: cat and dog carcasses from animal shelters, cancerous tissue and other slaughterhouse discards, and food processing waste. Why the fuss about some slightly toxic Chinese protein powder?
Our government and agribusiness will not protect our food supply, but we can, by purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables grown close to home, at farmers’ markets and local food co-ops. And by avoiding garbage-fed meat and dairy products.
-- Miles Barne, Sharon Park Drive, Menlo Park
<i>This letter was published in the May 16, 2007, issue of the Almanac.</i>