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Where’s The Cheese?

One of he things the Bushit Administration and Republican Congress did was to cut FDA funding for food inspection and food safety. The country has been paying for that with massive salmonella outbreaks and food fraud ever since. Next time you have a Pizza, and what you sprinkle on top tastes like sawdust…

(was?) Made out of the same stuff particle board and Trex wood decking is made from…

FDA Says ‘Parmesan’ Cheese Might Actually Be Cheddar or Wood Pulp

Add Parmesan to the list of foods that come with more than you bargained for: The FDAwarns Parmesan fraud has become a serious problem for American consumers. Tests show products described as “100 percent Parmesan” routinely have cut-rate substitutes — like wood pulp, and cheaper cheeses such as cheddar, Swiss, and mozzarella.

As part of its new leaf, the agency hasstepped up prosecuting industry offenders, and right now it’s in the middle of a criminal case against Castle Cheese, once a top supplier to the big grocery chains, for selling “Parmesan” products that would give old-world cheese-makers in Parma a coronary. Per the FDA, Castle made shoddy cheeses for almost 30 years, and supplied the Market Pantry brand at Target and two others for Associated Wholesale, the nation’s second-largest retail wholesaler, all of which contained “no Parmesan cheese” despite claiming on their labels to be 100 percent.

Castle is the FDA’s highest-profile case of Parmesan-maker-gone-awry — its president is supposed to plead guilty this month to charges that could mean a year in prison and a $100,000 fine, and Bloomberg notes its scam cheeses made money hand over fist, enough to adorn the factory “with crenelated battlements and curved archways” so it looked like “a medieval castle.” But while the company actually filed for bankruptcy in 2014 after a fired factory worker ratted the company out to the FDA, people in the industry still say packs of grated Parm are full of fraud: One cheese-maker fighting for stricter labeling laws says 40 percent of what’s out there isn’t even a cheese product, and a Dairy Farmers of America subsidiary claims its tests showed only one-third of labels are accurate.

Bloomberg also ran some lab tests on brands of “100 percent” grated Parmesan to see how much cellulose, the main ingredient in paper, they contained. The results were disconcerting:

Essential Everyday 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese, from Jewel-Osco, was 8.8 percent cellulose, while Wal-Mart Stores Inc.’s Great Value 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese registered 7.8 percent, according to test results. Whole Foods 365 brand didn’t list cellulose as an ingredient on the label, but still tested at 0.3 percent. Kraft had 3.8 percent.

Spokespeople for Kraft Heinz, Walmart, Jewel-Osco, Target, and Whole Foods each questioned Bloomberg‘s findings, but they assured reporters their companies were most definitely “investigating” or at least “looking into” this matter.

 

 
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Posted by on February 18, 2016 in Domestic terrorism, General, Stupid Republican Tricks

 

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Another Republican Failure – U.S. Ranks in Top 5 in Worst Food Safety Culprits

Within two hours of Bush’s swearing-in on Jan. 20, White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card halted publication of most new regulations in the Federal Register and postponed for 60 days the start of rules already published. To figure out which food rules should stay and which should go, members of the Bush administration are calling each of the USDA’s 29 agencies looking for food-related proposals, executive orders and announcements for review. Veneman and a team of Bush’s top policy advisers will decide which rules they like and which ones they want to change or toss out entirely.

The conservative “gub’ment deregulation fever” led to the deaths of hundreds of Americans, and sickening nearly 70 million a year. After 8 years of the Bushit destroying Food Safety, the United States now ranks near the bottom

A new international food safety monitoring tool has been developed to track food safety offenses by country, and the results don’t look good for the U.S. It joins China, Turkey, Iran, and Spain as the five countries with the worst records of food safety.

The new tool uses massive amounts of food recall data collected from 2003 to 2008 to make it’s calculations, and it’s all available online in a user-friendly format for anyone to see, even if it is still obviously geared towards researchers. According to one of the tool’s developers, D. P. Naughton, “No other system can reflect the complexity of this information in a snapshot form.” This advanced level of food safety analysis should prove particularly useful to developing countries, many of which still don’t have comprehensive food safety programs.

This is perhaps the first time such a massive amount of food recall data has been compiled and analyzed in this way, and the results should wake America up. Why is the richest nation in the world doing such a terrible job protecting its citizens from food contamination?

The answer to that question is complex, but a two simple things are clear: Our industrial system that prioritizes speed and low cost is dangerous, and we need to do something about it now.

 
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Posted by on March 23, 2010 in Stupid Republican Tricks

 

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