The Chinese have had tens of thousands of infants get sick, some die, and a large number suffer permanent, life-threatening kidney damage due to melamine poisoning in infant formula. Now we, too, can look forward to contaminated formula the the spectre of sick babies:
Demands For Baby Formula Recall MountSo it's dangerous. Unless US manufacturers contaminate the formula. Then it's not so bad...
Disclosure that laboratory tests have detected traces of contamination in several major brands of infant formula generated concern and confusion Wednesday, with a national consumer group and the Illinois attorney general demanding a Food and Drug Administration recall.
The FDA shunned those calls, but admitted it had released inaccurate information on what chemicals were found in which top selling products.
As worried parents called manufacturers looking for guidance about the presence of melamine and a key byproduct in U.S.-made formula, the FDA reiterated its position that the baby food is safe and parents should continue feeding it to their babies, contending the extremely low levels of contamination do not present a health danger.
Also, a spokesman for one major manufacturer criticized the FDA for its release of the inaccurate information.
"We're getting inundated by calls from moms confused about the situation," said Pete Paradossi, a spokesman for Mead Johnson, one of the three major manufacturers of U.S.-made formula involved in the problem detections.
Melamine is the industrial chemical found in Chinese infant formula - in far larger concentrations - that has been blamed for killing at least three babies and making at least 50,000 others ill."The levels that we are detecting are extremely low," said Dr. Stephen Sundlof, director of the FDA's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. "They should not be changing the diet. If they've been feeding a particular product, they should continue to feed that product. That's in the best interest of the baby."
Part of the confusion Wednesday stemmed from the FDA's own statements.
While proclaiming that the very low concentrations detected of melamine and a similar compound called cyanuric acid pose no health danger to infants, the FDA has maintained it is unable to identify any exposure level of melamine in infant formula "that does not raise public health concerns."
I'm so glad the littlest monkey is 12 and this is a non-issue for us. I feel sorry for anyone who has an infant and can't breast feed... What a horrible thing to have to go through.
All we have do is avoid certain non-US foods and shop in the organic section for foods that contain processed milk or flour, I'm not "Joe Organic," in the way that many people are, but because of the requirements for "organic" labeling, I think it's rational to go that was as they are not as likely to be contaminated with Chinese-source food products.
No doubt the Libertarians have an answer for this which includes destroying what little protection the gutted FDA can still provide.