Many of us are asking where the FDA was when the wheat gluten that contained the poisonous melamine was being imported and put into the food of our dogs and cats. (Many more of us are going to be wondering where the FDA has been once they finish their investigation and find out that the wheat gluten in human food has been similarly contaminated.)
First of all, why do we import wheat gluten? Don't we grow wheat and export it to countries like China?
Second, why does the FDA either not have adequate standards or does not conduct adequate inspections, etc. to find out that our food supply has been poisoned -- BEFORE people and pets get sick.
We know for example, that FDA knew about the problem with e. coli contamination of spinach long before the outbreak last year resulted in at least 3 deaths and hundreds of people getting sick. FDA took no action except to "urge" the industry to take appropriate actions.
OSHA Fails to Protect Worker Health
Today, the NYT reports that OSHA has done nothing to protect workers (or consumers) from exposure to diacetyl, a dangerous chemical that is put in microwave popcorn.
Seven years ago, a Missouri doctor discovered a troubling pattern at a
microwave popcorn plant in the town of Jasper. After an additive was modified to produce a more buttery taste, nine workers came down with a rare, life-threatening disease that was ravaging their lungs.
Puzzled Missouri health authorities turned to two federal agencies in
Washington. Scientists at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and
Health, which investigates the causes of workplace health problems, moved
quickly to examine patients, inspect factories and run tests. Within months,
they concluded that the workers became ill after exposure to diacetyl, a
But the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's response has been to say that they plan to prepare a safety bulletin on the matter! That is it! Oh, and they may do some inspections. Inspections for what? If they aren't regulating the material or the process what are they inspecting for? And why haven't they done anything for 7 years?
And if this chemical is so horrible for the workers lungs, what makes them think it is okay for us to eat!?!
Knollenberg Fails to Do Anything
So what has Joe Knollenberg done about these problems?
He doesn't discuss them on his website.
He hasn't proposed a single piece of legislation regarding these issues.
He has done nothing.