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Our Safety Matters

Our Safety Matters

Based on data from the US Department of Agriculture, after years of being the world’s top food producer, the US is about to become the top_DSC9702  food importer.

Why does it matter?  Well, besides our jobs, our economy and our independence, our safety matters!  On September 4th, 2007, there was a massive recall of canned chili, stew, hash, and other canned products from Mexico due to a potentially fatal botulism contamination. In March of the same year, there was a recall of various brands of pet food from China that had been poisoning and killing animals. In July of 2010, Ready Pac Foods and other produce companies were forced to recall imported products containing baby spinach that had been infected with a malevolent strain of the bacteria E. coli, which is known to cause serious health issues, including salmonella and dysentery.

Many food processors package under a variety of labels, so it’s difficult to track all these health risks back to those responsible. And it’s not just food that’s being produced elsewhere with safety concerns. In 2008, hundreds of patients were poisoned by heparin, an anti-clotting drug, made from ingredients in China. The FDA, has only two agents in China and are only able to inspect 11 percent of the factories.

Caroline Smith DeWall, director of food safety for the Center for Science in the Public Interest, says “If people cannot trace a product back to a supplier, the supplier has no incentives to keep their processes as clean and effective, in terms of food safety, as possible.”

In August of 2007, there was a massive recall for over 900,000 toys from Mattel, one of the most well known toy makers, dealing with products like Barbie dolls, spell-with-me Elmo, and Dora the Explorer backpacks. The reason for this massive recall was that studies found that the paint used on these products contained lead, which can be harmful to small children. There was another recall for the same reason in 2009. In the US, lead based paint is considered a toxic substance, and is illegal to use. However, this is obviously not true for some foreign manufacturing plants. Small children exposed to lead based paint can suffer long term effects like permanent brain damage and a steady decrease in IQ and reasoning skills. Title I, of the Consumer Product Safety Act of 2008, states that “any children’s product of the Consumer Product Safety Act that contains more lead than the limit established by paragraph (2) shall be treated as a banned hazardous substance under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act.” 

In addition, there is great concern that drywall produced in foreign countries can also be hazardous to the health of home owners. This is especially true in Washington and California, where there have been cases of hazardous air-born chemicals coming from imported dry wall.

Supporting American made products means you support the health and welfare of our people. It means testing and adherence to safety standards for toys, food, building materials, appliances and other consumer goods.

Show your support of American made and grown products, and help us keep our families safe.

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