Friday, November 16, 2007

Smells Un-Fishey to Me !

In 2004 China became the leading exporter of seafood to the U.S. In 2005 Chinese imports rose by 14% and by a further 23% in 2006. So far, in 2007, they are up another 34% over 2006.

As a matter of fact, China is Number 1 in aquaculture in the world. Now for the nasty stuff!

Every year, 3.7 billion tons of sewage is discharged directly into China's rivers, lakes and coastal waters, some of which is used by the aquaculture industry. Only 45% of China has any sewage-treatment facilities, the worst in all of Asia.

Not only are the Chinese using contaminated water, but then the aquaculture industry crams as much fish and shellfish as possible into their facilities to maximize production. This generates additional large volumes of waste, further contaminating the already contaminated water. Then the Chinese try to control the spread of bacterial infections, disease and parasites by pumping the food supplies with antibiotics and the waters with pesticides. Mmm Mmm Mmm chemicalized fish ... sure am looking forward to dining at my favorite seafood restarant.

Many of the chemicals used by the Chinese are banned in the U.S. But traces of these chemical cocktails have been showing up increasingly in imports - especially from China.

Food & Water Watch in its report titled "Import Alert: Government Fails Consumer, Falls Short on Seafood Inspections." makes the point that, "In addition to potentially making people sick, overuse of such drugs is contributing to antibiotic resistance, a growing health concern in a variety of foods."

Meanwhile back at the ranch, what are the Dunces over at the FDA doing about this? As usual ... very little. They're having a real tough time cutting through the red tape that they always seem to wrap themselves in.

Beijing has put on their mantle of righteous indignation and is adamant that it is doing nothing wrong and characterizes warnings issued by U.S. officials as irresponsible, the exact same phraseology they used after the recent scare over toothpaste contaminated with diethylene glycol.

In that scenario, China's General Administration of Quality Supervision fumed that "so far we have not received any report of death resulting from using the toothpaste." "The U.S. handling of this case is neither scientific nor responsible."

Perhaps its true that no one died from the toothpaste but what about the 100 people who died after apparently taking cough syrup containing DEG, an industrial solvent used in paint and antifreeze ... another fine example of Chinese product quality!

As far as China's contention that its the big bad U.S. government who is being irresponsible? Thought you'd like to know that just recently the Chinese court decided to sentence their country's former top regulator to death ... hmmmmm!

Perhaps he will be executed by being forced to ingest the lead from all of the childrens toys which they're also exporting to the U.S. Now that would be responsible!

PS: Stop buying any product that is manufactured in China and see just how quickly they and all those greedy American corporations who are outsourcing their manufacturing to China get their sorry-ass acts together!

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