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#69743 - 05/01/07 07:34 AM Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Rogo16 Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 439
Loc: Arizona
From today's NY Times

http://tinyurl.com/32fhfo

U.S. Says Some Chicken Feed Tainted
By ALEXEI BARRIONUEVO
Published: May 1, 2007

CHICAGO, April 30 — Government investigators said Monday that byproducts from
pet food contaminated with wheat gluten imported from China were used in chicken
feed on some farms in Indiana.

The latest revelation came as part of the investigation into imported rice
protein concentrate and wheat gluten that have been found to contain melamine
and melamine-related compounds. Pet food contaminated with melamine has killed
at least 16 cats and dogs and sickened thousands of others.

The Agriculture Department and the Food and Drug Administration said that some
30 broiler poultry farms and eight breeder poultry farms in Indiana had received
contaminated feed in early February and fed it to chickens within days of
receiving it. All of those potentially affected chickens have since been
processed.

The two agencies said they believed the likelihood of illness to people eating
contaminated chicken was low because the contamination was most likely diluted.
Without evidence of harm to humans, the agencies said they were not issuing
recalls of any of the processed chicken products.

The Agriculture Department and the F.D.A. revealed last week that eight pork
producers in seven states had purchased adulterated feed. Some 6,000 hogs were
quarantined as a result in California, Kansas, North Carolina, New York,
Oklahoma, South Carolina and Utah. Authorities are also in contact with a feed
mill in Missouri that might have received adulterated products.

On Monday, Tyson Foods acknowledged that it had sent nearly 200 hogs that may
have eaten feed containing melamine to a pork-processing plant. But the F.D.A.
and the U.S.D.A. said they were not concerned that those hogs posed any risk to
people, according to Bloomberg News.
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Rogo

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#69744 - 05/02/07 03:42 PM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
RuffEnuff Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 01/27/06
Posts: 1148
Loc: Australia
excuse my ignorance (in a small voice), what is melamine and how does it affect animals and how is it passed down the food chain?

it would be interesting to know what other, 'lesser' toxic, more difficult to find products sneak in.
k.

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#69745 - 05/02/07 08:58 PM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Caladenia Offline
Chicken

Registered: 02/12/07
Posts: 146
Loc: Australia
hi ruff,
this may help
http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-melamine.htm
its found in a lot of particle wood products i think.

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#69746 - 05/02/07 10:01 PM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Foehn Offline
Administrator
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 1968
Loc: New Zealand
Quote:
The two agencies said they believed the likelihood of illness to people eating
contaminated chicken was low because the contamination was most likely diluted.
Now haven't we heard that before! DDT was not supposed to be dangerous, but it got into the human food chain. There was also a famous case of dairy cows being poisoned with contaminated feed, somewhere in the east of USA. Can't remember the exact details but I recall a documentary about it because the authorities tried to cover it up. It was traced back to storage practises in the feedstore. I remember the implications being horrific because the famers wife was breast feeding an infant. Their whole herd was destroyed and buried in a deep trench.
While USA and other countries are taking this melamine contamination seriously, the same cannot be said of NZ
Quote:
The Green Party is calling on the New Zealand Food Safety Authority to conduct urgent tests on potentially contaminated food and pet food imported from China to ensure they do not contain industrial chemicals such as melamine, as has been found in the USA.

“New Zealand consumers need to be reassured that pet food and other food products such as corn gluten, corn meal, soy protein, rice bran and concentrate imported from China are safe,” Ms Kedgley says.

Following the deaths and illness of thousands of American pets, it was revealed last month that some pet food and potentially also food additives exported from China were contaminated with the chemical melamine.

“New Zealand imports around $450,000 worth of pet food from China, as well as $700,000 worth of wheat gluten. It is possible that contaminated products may have made their way here after processing in other countries. But without testing by NZFSA, New Zealand consumers will not know,” Ms Kedgley says.

The US Food and Drug Administration has launched a wide-ranging investigation to ascertain how widespread the problem is. It has also recalled more than 100 brands of pet food and has begun testing imported food additives from China intended for human consumption such as wheat gluten, corn gluten, cornmeal, rice bran and rice protein.

The Canadian government has also announced its intention to seize shipments of products from China, including wheat and corn glutens and soy and rice proteins, and test to ensure they are safe.

“By contrast, the New Zealand Food Safety Authority has done nothing, except announce it will keep a 'watching brief' on the issue.”

“In response to an inquiry, NZFSA admitted that it is not testing either pet or human food in relation to the contamination, despite earlier comments in the New Zealand Herald to the contrary. It has failed to take swift and stringent action over this potentially far reaching and dangerous contamination,” Ms Kedgley says

"The United States Food and Drug administration has shown up the New Zealand Food Safety Authority’s typically lacklustre and laisser faire approach to consumer safety. I am calling for the NZFSA to follow the lead of the FDA and proactively test all imported protein concentrates.”
Sue Kedgely is an MP for the NZ Green Party

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#69747 - 05/03/07 04:21 AM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Rogo16 Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 439
Loc: Arizona
China's been adding melamine to their feed for 15 years:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18400433/

Animal feed in China often contains mild toxin

Thousands of hogs in U.S. who may have eaten tainted product destroyed.

The mildly toxic chemical melamine is commonly added to animal feed in China, a manager of a feed company and one of the chemical's producers said, a process that boosts the feed's sales value but risks introducing the chemical into meat eaten by humans.
  
BEIJING - In the United States, it is feared as a killer of cats and dogs and a potential threat to humans.

Yet in China, the mildly toxic chemical melamine is commonly used in animal feed and is even praised by some customers, according to the managers of a feed company and one of the chemical’s producers.

“Using the proper quantity of melamine will not harm the animals,” said Wang Jianhui, manager of the Kaiyuan Protein Feed company in the northern city of Shijiazhuang. “Our products are very safe, for sure,” Wang added.

Feeding animals food containing melamine risks introducing the chemical into the food chain through their meat or eggs. Scientists say there is no evidence that people could get sick, but say they know too little about how the chemical reacts with other substances to be sure it is safe.

Chinese wheat gluten containing melamine was blamed in a wave of pet deaths in March due to kidney failure. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration investigated, and nearly 100 brands of pet food made with the ingredient were ordered recalled. Adding the chemical to food is illegal under American law, and China’s government last week said it was banning its use in food products.

Usually used to make fertilizer and plastics, melamine has no nutritional value but is rich in nitrogen, meaning it raises the nitrogen level of feed. That makes products appear to be higher in protein, and can lead to higher prices for feed for stock animals such as pigs, chickens, and fish, as well as for household pets such as cats and dogs.

James Kapin, a member of the American Chemical Society’s executive committee on health and safety, said testing on rats and mice has shown melamine to be toxic only at extraordinarily high levels.

However, he said manufacturing the pet food or the animals’ own metabolism may have changed the melamine into something more lethal. Maybe a “combination of all these things,” he said, explains why relatively low doses of melamine resulted in kidney failure.

In the past, Kapin said testing for nitrogen was a “quick and dirty way to screen for protein.” He said several companies have said they would no longer rely on nitrogen tests to determine protein content, and instead would do more expensive tests that look for protein itself.

However, Kaiyuan Protein Feed’s Wang said his customers either don’t know or aren’t concerned about the melamine.

“We’ve been running the melamine feed business for about 15 years and receiving positive responses from our customers,” Wang told The Associated Press.

No data on health effects

Some pet food was shipped to hog farms in several U.S. states for use as feed and was later discovered to have another ingredient, rice protein concentrate, that had been imported from China and was tainted with melamine. Thousands of U.S. hogs that were fed contaminated feed were ordered destroyed to prevent adulterated meat from reaching consumers.

The contaminated gluten was traced to a trading company based in eastern Jiangsu province, Xuzhou Anying Biologic Technology Development Co., and a firm in the nearby province of Shandong, Binzhou Futian Bio-technology Co. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has blocked wheat and rice gluten from both companies pending an investigation.

China’s government said last week it would allow FDA investigators to visit.

Xuzhou Anying managers have said they have no idea how the melamine got into the gluten, which they claim was acquired from other firms and sold to a third company which exported it to the United States.

However, suspicions were raised when the company was found to have posted an online advertisement in March seeking to buy melamine.

Ji Denghui, manager of Sanming Dinghui Chemical Trading Co. in the eastern province of Fujian, said animal food companies are some of his best customers.

“A lot of animal food companies buy melamine from us to add in the animal feed,” Ji said. “This can lower the production cost and increase nitrogen levels.”

Ji played down the risk, saying that despite China’s repeated food safety scares, the companies could be trusted to use melamine safely.

“I believe it won’t do any harm if there is only very small amount,” Ji said. “Otherwise, those companies could not do that.”
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Rogo

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#69748 - 05/03/07 06:00 AM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Susie Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 1902
Loc: Arkansas
This whole thing frustrates the crud outta me.

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#69749 - 05/03/07 08:50 AM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Speckled Hen Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 10/24/06
Posts: 534
Loc: Georgia
My coffee mug is made of melamine. Seems pretty bizarre that anyone would add that substance to feed on purpose!

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#69750 - 05/03/07 12:52 PM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Bluetick Offline
Bantam

Registered: 02/06/05
Posts: 62
Loc: New York
I emailed Cargill a couple of days ago inquiring about the sources of the ingredients used in the poultry feed I use. I also asked them to be more specific about the ingredient list that includes "grain products, plant protein products, processed grain by-products," etc.

The initial response was an acknowledgement they had received my inquiry. Will post any other response. The feed I use for my ducks, geese, and chickens is Agway Game and Turkey Finisher and Maintenance, but apparently is manufactured by Cargill Animal Nutrition.

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#69751 - 05/03/07 01:46 PM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Speckled Hen Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 10/24/06
Posts: 534
Loc: Georgia
I used to live very close to the Cargill Processing Plant in Dayton, Ohio. Whew, let me tell you, the stench that wafted over my neighborhood from time to time was like I was drowning in a bag of dogfood! BTW, Cargill is a big supporter of the NAIS agenda and makes Nutrena feeds as well as Agway. And dont you just love those vague ingredient lists? I'd be interested to know what you find out from them.

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#69752 - 05/03/07 02:45 PM Re: Melamine: Dogs, Cats, Swine - Now Chooks
Rogo16 Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 439
Loc: Arizona
Cargill recently bought out the private feed mills here (Arizona). The feed stores like it since they get a wider variety of feeds. I hate it 'cause I know what Cargill is.

The feed is still in the original owner's bags. They claim they'll be changed when they run out of bags. Yeah, sure. It's been months.
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Rogo

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