The FDA Is Accused Of Failing To Protect Children From The Dangers Of Food Coloring

Coloring food with artificial dyes is a long time practice of food manufacturers to make their food products more appealing to consumers.  Children are especially targeted with bright color foods to increase their desire for unhealthy food products.

Recently, the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), released a report that accuses The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for “failing to protect children” from the disturbing behavioral problems caused by artificial food dyes. Even though evidence of the dangers to children from artificial food dyes has continued to mount since 2011, the CSPI says the FDA’s continued inaction is disturbing.  Since the 1970s, researchers has been studying the potential link of artificial food coloring to the rise in rates of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children.

Colorful bonbons

In contrast, since 2010, the European Union has require warning labels for various food dyes.  Certain studies indicate that children are eating very significant amounts of food dyes in their daily diets.  A recent study conducted by Dr. Ameena Batada of the University of North Carolina and the CSPI found that more than 90% of child-oriented candies, fruit-flavored snacks, and drink mixes and powders are artificially colored. It also showed that a majority of child-oriented foods made by such companies as Kraft, PepsiCo, and General Mills are dyed with artificial colors.

The CSPI’s report, titled Seeing Red, says in order to protect children, the FDA should:

(1)  Ban synthetic dyes in foods and beverages since they do not meet the legal safety standard. Companies that wish to use a synthetic dye in food must submit convincing evidence showing that the dye is safe and does not cause adverse behavior.

(2)  As an interim measure, require warning labels on dyed foods stating:

“WARNING: This food contains synthetic food colorings that may impair the behavior of some children.”

(3) Update information on the FDA website and in other materials to accurately inform the public that food dyes can impair the behavior of some children.

PARENTS AND CHILD CARE PROVIDERS !!!!   Take precautions to avoid feeding children any food products containing artificial food dyes.  READ FOOD PRODUCT LABELS CLOSELY.   Read food product labels closely to see if any artificial colors or artificial dyes are listed.  Avoid products containing artificial food colors and dyes whenever possible.

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Cantaloupe Listeria Outbreak: 116 Cases, 23 Deaths

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Wednesday said the outbreak linked to Listeria-tainted cantaloupe has killed 23 of the 116 people sickened, and that four of the illnesses are related to pregnancies.  As of Oct. 11, the CDC added 7 more confirmed cases and two deaths, both from Louisiana, to the outbreak toll. Illnesses associated with eating contaminated cantaloupe from the single, implicated grower — Jensen Farms of Colorado — have now been reported by 25 states.  You will have no problems at Ellwood Thompson’s Local Market, our cantaloupe is 100% organic and not from Jensen Farms of Colorado.  Click here for full story.

Cantaloupe Listeria outbreak

You may not want to eat the cantaloupe in your refrigerator if you are not sure where it came from.  While the FDA has not announced a recall on cantaloupe, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention warned of the multi-state outbreak that health officials believe originated from the popular Rocky Ford cantaloupes, which are produced in the Arkansas Valley of Colorado.  The cases were reported in five states: Colorado, Texas, Indiana, Nebraska and Oklahoma. Click here for full story.

E. Coli Fears Prompt National Beef to Recall 60,424 Pounds of Ground Beef

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said National Beef Packing Co has recalled about 60,424 pounds of ground beef products after inspection at an Ohio processing plant produced suspicions of contamination by E. coli 0157:H7 bacteria.

Not to worry though, our USDA Certified Organic, all-natural and/or local beef is not included in this recall. If you have any questions or concerns regarding our ground beef or our meat and seafood standards, please let us know.

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The Latest Raw Milk Raid: An Attack on Food Freedom?

August 3 was a telling day for food freedom in America, but the events were framed in terms of food safety. In Venice, California, the Rawesome raw food club was raided by armed federal and county agents who arrested a club volunteer and seized computers, files, cash, and $70,000 worth of perishable produce. James Stewart, 64, was charged on 13 counts, 12 of them related to the processing and sale of unpasteurized milk to club members. The other count involved unwashed, room-temperature eggs—a storage method Rawesome members prefer. The agents dumped gallons of raw milk and filled a large flatbed with seized food, including coconuts, watermelons, and frozen buffalo meat.

Read the rest of the article here.

NON-GMO Verified: Doing Our Part

If you’re not familiar with GMO’s, here’s the rundown: GMOs (or “genetically modified organisms”) are organisms that have been created through the gene-splicing techniques of biotechnology (also called genetic engineering, or GE). This relatively new science allows DNA from one species to be injected into another species in a laboratory, creating combinations of plant, animal, bacteria, and viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.

In 30 other countries around the world, including Australia, Japan, and all of the countries in the European Union, there are significant restrictions or outright bans on the production of GMOs, because they are not considered proven safe. In the U.S. on the other hand, the FDA approved commercial production of GMOs based on studies conducted by the companies who created them and profit from their sale. Many health-conscious shoppers find the lack of rigorous, independent, scientific examination on the impact of consuming GM foods to be cause for concern.

We’ve been closely involved with the NON-GMO Project for a couple of years now, paying close attention to new guidelines that they create and keeping an even closer eye on products that make their verified list. This year we’re taking further steps to show you just what products we carry that have been verified by the NON-GMO Project. Now you can look on our shelves for the NON-GMO Project Verified tag letting you know that produce/brand has me the guidelines set by the Project. For more information on GMO’s and the NON-GMO Project, please visit their website.

Factory Farm Investigations Mapped

Proposed “Ag Gag” laws threaten the only way that the public can find out how meat, dairy, and eggs are really produced, and reveal that agribusiness wants to hide their activities from the public.

The interactive map (viewable here) locates factory farms that animal protection groups have exposed through undercover investigations. Among the findings of these investigations are animals living in filthy conditions, animals intensively confined for their entire lives, animals mutilated without painkillers, sick and suffering animals left to languish for extended periods, violations of animal welfare and food safety regulations, and egregious criminal acts of animal torture. Viewed individually, the actions shown might be dismissed as isolated incidents. Taken together, however, they reveal a pattern of disregard for animal welfare and routine cruelty-to-animals throughout animal agriculture. They also reveal that many legal, standard agricultural procedures are unconscionably cruel and cause prolonged suffering for animals. Many standard practices in animal agriculture must change, and new laws are needed in order to enforce basic standards of welfare for animals. There are currently no federal laws protecting the welfare of animals on farms.

Well, It's Official: GE Alfalfa is Free to Grow

Well, we tried… Yesterday evening, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the agency will fully deregulate Monsanto’s controversial genetically engineered alfalfa. The choice was favored by the biotech industry and one of three options identified in the USDA’s Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) released last month.

All of the alfalfa production stakeholders involved in this issue have stressed their willingness to work together to find solutions. We greatly appreciate and value the work they’ve done so far and will continue to provide support to the wide variety of sectors that make American agriculture successful.” – Tom Vilsack

What does this mean? Now, nearby Organic alfalfa farmers in close range to GE alfalfa farmers are at extremely high risk to cross contamination with their crops. The organic alfalfa sprouts that feed the organic cattle that give you the organic milk that you love so much, now have a pretty high risk of being contaminated with GE spores from natural causes (wind, bees, etc.).

USDA could have maintained regulatory status over the perennial crop that is so important as forage for the livestock industry. Or they could have chosen a limited regulation strategy with bans on the planting of GE alfalfa seeds in seed growing regions to attempt to limit the contamination of alfalfa seed stock by foreign DNA from Monsanto’s crop (alfalfa is pollinated by bees and other insects and has a pollination radius of five miles). Instead, the agency, under heavy pressure from the biotech sector, chose total deregulation. Over 250,000 public comments were received during the FEIS process, with the vast majority opposing deregulation.

To read the full USDA press release, click here.