Tuesday, March 26, 2013

5 Reasons Not To Eat Anything in China

by Kristina Chew March 22, 2013 2:30 pm
Reports of the bodies of more than 3,000 dead pigs found floating in the Huangpu River near Shanghai last week left many of us aghast. How had the pigs ended up in the river? How had they died?
Local authorities were quick to assert that the presence of thousands of dead pig carcasses in the river had no effect on the water supply. Netizens posting on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like microblogging service, begged to differ. They have good reason to: there have been numerous food scandals in China that authorities have not been very quick to acknowledge — indeed, in some cases, authorities have played a part in something of a cover-up.
1. 13,000 dead pigs and counting
The number of pig corpses found in the Huangpu River, which provides 22 percent of the water supply for Shanghai,now exceeds 13,000. Just under 10,000 pigs have been pulled from the water so far. Officials have been questioning farmers in the neighboring province of Zhejiang about dumping the pigs but have only been able to trace them to one farmer so far.
Some of the dead pigs have tested positive for porcine circovirus, a common swine disease that does not affect humans. Pork is the most popular meat in China, whose meat consumption has increased as more people’s incomes have, and the grisly findings in the Huangpu raise more than a few questions about food safety in general in China.
2. Melamine in milk formula
At least six babies died of kidney problems and more than 300,000 people were sickened from the illegal addition of the industrial chemical melamine in a number of food products in 2008. Melamine , which has a high nitrogen content, is added to food to make their protein content appear higher. Three people, including a farmer who made almost $1 million selling a melamine-laced concoction to milk buyers, were sentenced to death and over a hundred were detained.
Melamine (yes, the stuff that household goods like plates and bowls are made of, as well as fertilizer and industrial pipes) was found in baby formula and also detected in eggs from China on sale in Hong Kong.There have also been reports in the Chinese media of melamine being routinely added to animal feed.
3. Antibiotics in pork and other foods
Antibiotic use is rampant in pigs raised on farms in China, according to a recent study. The animals are given excessive amounts of antibiotics to make them grow bigger — with the result that strains of antibiotic-resistant organisms are developing that could endanger global health. As Care2 blogger Beth Buczynski wrote, these organisms end up in manure that is used as fertilizer or sold as compost or even “ends up downstream in rivers or groundwater, taking ARGs [antibiotic resistant genes] with them. These dangerous genes can also be spread via international trade, immigration and recreational travel.”
Western companies operating in China are not exempt from issues about food safety. American fast-food company Yum! brands, which owns Kentucky Fried Chicken and Pizza Hut, revealed last December that more than a few of its Chinese suppliers had provided chicken full of antibiotics to its KFC outlets in China.
4) Mislabeling Galore
Food products made in China are being mislabeled as halal imports from Islamic nations, including Malaysia. Muslim Uighurs who live in China’s northwestern Xinjiang region have turned to such “imports” as they distrust the state-run Islamic body and for good reason, given the Chinese government’s tense relationship with the Uighurs. In 2009, clashes between them and ethnic Han Chinese (who the government has encouraged to move into the Uighurs’ traditional territory) left at least 200 dead in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang.
Other instances of mislabeling of food in China include Walmart stores in Chongquing pulling packages of ordinary pork falsely labeled as organic from shelves and frozen goods that, after their original “sell-by” date expired, were repackaged.
5) Recycled “Sewer” Oil
In 2010, a professor from China’s Wuhan Polytechnic University estimated that 1 in 10 meals in Chinese restaurants are cooked using recycled oil. What’s more, it’s not that cooks are re-using the oil from their woks for dish after dish: the oil is often taken from restaurant drains.
As detailed on Grist, this “swill oil” contains aflatoxin, which is a “toxic fungus and notoriously potent carcinogen.” Restaurants can turn a nice profit by reselling their kitchen waste and have a big motivation to buy the stuff to use themselves, as its price is half that of cooking oil.
It’s all enough to make one think, when in China, go vegan — but what were those fruits and vegetables washed in?

Friday, March 22, 2013



 A West Vancouver luxury boutique owned by Jody Claman of Real Housewives of Vancouver fame was allegedly vandalized Thursday night for selling fur.
Claman said the storefront was splattered with paint and tagged with the letters ALF — which presumably stand for Animal Liberation Front.
But the reality-TV star placed most of the blame for the attack on her co-star and nemesis, Mary Zilba.
“I am being targeted because she told people I sell fur [in the store],” Claman told The Province.
“It’s ridiculous.”
Claman said that, while her store, Glass House Couture, does sell fur, most of it is vintage or sourced from places such as Finland where animals are treated ethically.
“I don’t believe in killing innocent animals,” she said.
A note on the store’s Facebook page advertises fur and feather vests, pointing to numerous stars and celebrities who were photographed this fall wearing fur.
West Vancouver RCMP said they are conducting a mischief investigation. An unusual odour prompted police to close Clyde Avenue for a few hours while HAZMAT teams investigated, but no health risks were found, said Const. Jeff Palmer.
“We have no suspects at this time,” he added.
An ALF spokesman in the United States told The Province he hasn’t been contacted by Vancouver activists claiming responsibility for the vandalism, but the letters on Claman’s shop are a good indication it was the group.
Several Vancouver stores that sell fur have been targeted by ALF in recent months.
According to the ALF website, on Christmas Eve the locks at Hills of Kerrisdale were glued shut as a “warning” to stop selling fur, leather, down and silk.
And on New Year’s Day an anonymous “communique” was posted to the website saying Speiser Furs was targeted by two separate ALF cells on the same night.
When one group went to glue the locks and past leaflets, another group was at the back of the store “using hypodermic needles to shoot a foul substance into the store through cracks in the door.”
The missive also spoke of another attack at Max Mara several days earlier.
Claman said it wasn’t fair that little comments made by others on the reality-TV show should affect her business.
“I am a human being,” she said.  [sorry lady you are a piece of shit in my book]


On a side note have you ever see such ugly plastic faces?

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Orangutans are considered as pests by the palm oil industry

Often orangutans are run over by logging machinery, beat to death, buried alive or set on fire... all in the name of palm oil.

''Did you know that each and everyone of us is fueling one of the world's biggest ecological disasters and acts of primate genocide in history?

Borneo and Sumatra are two of the most bio-diverse regions of the world, yet they have the longest list of endangered species. This list includes the magnificent orangutan. These two South-East Asian islands are extremely rich in life, containing around 20,000 flowering plant species, 3,000 tree species, 300,000 animal species and thousands more being discovered each year. Despite this amazing biodiversity and delicate web of species, an area the size of 300 football fields of rainforest is cleared each hour in Indonesia and Malaysia to make way for the production of one vegetable oil. That's 6 football fields destroyed each minute. This vegetable oil is called palm oil, and is found in hundreds of the everyday products, from baked goods and confectionery, to cosmetics and cleaning agents... many of which you buy in your weekly shopping.

Due to the massive international demand for palm oil, palm oil plantations are rapidly replacing the rainforest habitat of the critically endangered orangutan; with over 90% of their habitat already destroyed in the last 20 years.

Orangutans are some of our closest relatives, sharing approximately 97% of their DNA with humans. Orangutan means 'Person of the jungle' in the Indonesian language. It is estimated that 6 to 12 of these 'jungle people' are killed each day for palm oil. These gentle creatures are either killed in the deforestation process, when they wonder into a palm oil plantation looking for food, or in the illegal pet trade after they've been captured and kept as pets in extremely poor conditions and provided with extremely poor nutrition.

Orangutans are considered as pests by the palm oil industry. In the deforestation process, workers are told that if wildlife gets in the way, they are to do whatever is necessary in order to dispose them, no matter how inhumane. Often orangutans are run over by logging machinery, beat to death, buried alive or set on fire... all in the name of palm oil.

Government data has shown that over 50,000 orangutans have already died as a result of deforestation due to palm oil in the last two decades. Experts say that if this pattern of destruction and exploitation continues, these intelligent acrobats of the jungle will be extinct in the wild within 3 to 12 years (as early as 2015). It is also thought that their jungle habitat will be completely gone within 20 years (approximately 2033).

Around 50 million tons of palm oil is produced annually; with almost all of that being non-sustainable palm oil, that replaces 12 million hectares of dense, bio-diverse rainforest. That's the equivalent landmass of North Korea deforested each year for palm oil alone!

Palm oil is also having a shocking impact on our planet. The production of this one vegetable oil is not only responsible for polluting rivers and causing land erosion, but when the plantation workers set fire to the remaining trees, shrubs and debris to make way for the oil palms, it produces immense amount of smoke pollution that is toxic to planet earth. This has been found to be the second biggest contributor to greenhouse gas in the world.

By purchasing products that contain crude palm oil, you are helping destroy ancient, pristine rainforest, wipe out species like the orangutan, and create a large-scale ecological disaster. Think of the consequences next time you do your weekly shopping; the consequences not only for orangutans and other animals, but for us as the human race; for we cannot survive without the rainforests either. We have a choice, orangutans do not.''

  •  Partial list of other names for palm oil-derived ingredients:*

  1. PKO – Palm Kernel Oil
  2. PKO fractionations: Palm Kernel Stearin (PKs); Palm Kernel Olein (PKOo)
  3. PHPKO – Partially hydrogenated Palm Oil
  4. FP(K)O – Fractionated Palm Oil
  5. OPKO – Organic Palm Kernel Oil
  6. Palmitate – Vitamin A or Asorbyl Palmitate (NOTE: Vitamin A Palmitate is a very common ingredient in breakfast cereals and we have confirmed 100% of the samples we’ve investigated to be derived from palm oil)
  7. Palmate
  8. Sodium Laureth Sulphate (Can also be from coconut)
  9. Sodium Lauryl Sulphates (can also be from ricinus oil)
  10. Sodium dodecyl Sulphate (SDS or NaDS)
  11. Elaeis Guineensis
  12. Glyceryl Stearate
  13. Stearic Acid
  14. Chemicals which contain palm oil
  15. Steareth -2
  16. Steareth -20
  17. Sodium Lauryl Sulphate
  18. Sodium lauryl sulfoacetate (coconut and/or palm)
  19. Hydrated palm glycerides
  20. Sodium isostearoyl lactylaye (derived from vegetable stearic acid)
  21. Cetyl palmitate and octyl palmitate (names with palmitate at the end are usually derived from palm oil, but as in the case of Vitamin A Palmitate, very rarely a company will use a different vegetable oil)

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Cruelty Report for Today 3/13/2013

5 new results for cruelty

Animal Cruelty Investigation
A Buncombe County pet owner is accused of starving three dogs after giving two of them to an animal shelter. Amanda Rodriguez is charged with two felony counts and one misdemeanor count of cruelty to animals. Deputies say she tortured two of them.
See all stories on this topic »
Pregnant woman accused of animal cruelty in court today
Elizabeth Lewis, 19, stood before Judge Daniel J. Gattermeyer, March 6 after being charged with cruelty to a companion animal and failure to license a dog, both misdemeanors. Outside the courthouse, animal lovers and members of the humane society, ...
See all stories on this topic »
Augusta man facing attempted murder, child cruelty charges
The Augusta Chronicle
The charges are attempted murder and cruelty to children. According to the indictment, Jones is accused of beating the toddler with a belt Jan. 6. He is also accused of turning on the water in the bath tub and threatened to drown the child on the same day.
See all stories on this topic »
Jeffersonville man accused of animal cruelty
Amy, Andy, Belle, Clyde, Joy and Tyson are the names of Richard Fletcher's six horses. Police seized them from the Jeffersonville man last January. He's facing six counts of animal cruelty. And it's up to a jury to decide if they believe the ...
See all stories on this topic »
Cutting the cruelty from cosmetics
On Line opinion
On 11 March 2013 a full ban on animal testing of cosmetics came into force in the European Union (EU). This means that it is now illegal to import or market cosmetic products within the E.U. if the product contains any ingredients that have been tested ...
See all stories on this topic »

Friday, March 8, 2013

The world has said 'No' to the bloody pelts stolen from defenseless harp seal pups. Now, it's time for Canada to accept the world's condemnation of this massacre and 'Move On'.

It's March, and harp seal pups have been born in the Gulf of St. Lawrence and off the coast of Newfoundland. This year, with sparse Gulf ice, the harp seal mothers who migrated to the Southern Gulf gave birth mostly off the coast of Prince Edward Island. How well the pups survive on the ice in the next couple weeks is yet to be seen. These pups, too young to swim, are at the mercy of winds and air temperatures, and changes in climate that are out of their control.

stranded whitecoat
Another looming hazard for the seal pups is Canada's seal 'hunt'. Will it happen this year? With almost all markets for seal products closed worldwide, with hundreds of thousands of seal pup's pelts already stockpiled, one would hope that reason would prevail, and the seal pups would be allowed to live.
But the Canadian government does not act in a rational manner. Giving CAN$2.3 million of Newfoundland tax money to a foreign seal skin processor (a purported 'loan' that can never be repaid) last year was not a rational act. Since the money was not fully utilized, it is possible that the killing will happen again this year without any additional allocations of taxpayer funds. Seal pups may again die not just for vanity, but in vain.

What can you do?
This is the time of year when protests occur around the world. Mid-March is the 'World Week of Action for the Seals'. There will be events in Canada, including a protest in Nanaimo. Visit our Seal Activist Network and sign up for or post your event.
Canada flagIn addition to outdoor protests, Harpseals.org is calling for a worldwide call in day, March 15, 2013, to Members of Canada's Parliament in Ottawa. The message that we want to convey is
Move On, Canada
The world has said 'No' to the bloody pelts stolen from defenseless harp seal pups. Now, it's time for Canada to accept the world's condemnation of this massacre and 'Move On'. Move on to fund a buyout of sealing licenses. Move on to support training for these fishermen/sealers who are finding less and less work as fishermen as the ocean ecology is decimated (by them).
Let's overload their phone lines with calls to 'Move on, Canada! End the seal hunt now!'
Please call Right Hon. Stephen Harper, Prime Minister: 613-992-4211
and Hon. Keith Ashfield, Fisheries Minister: 613-992-1067
and Hon. Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade: 613-995-0183
Canadians, please call the Parliament switchboard toll-free (Canada): 1-866-599-4999 and request to speak to your MP as well. You can also find your MP's contact number here.

Update on the WTO Challenge to Overturn the Ban on Seal Product Imports
The World Trade Organization (WTO) has heard the first round of arguments in the case brought by Canada and Norway to attempt to overturn the EU ban on seal product imports. The WTO heard not only from Canada, Norway, and EU representatives, but third parties also presented their cases. Included among these was the U.S., which argued in favor of keeping the ban on seal product imports. Presenting their arguments against this ban were Japan and Iceland, and presumably Namibia (which presented its arguments in secret).
The second set of hearings is scheduled for April. Then the WTO is expected to issue its decision in the summer or early fall.
Visit harpseals.org to read more about this critical hearing. There you will find a link to a law professor's view on the strength of Canada and Norway's case to overturn the ban.

Thank you for caring.
For the seals,
Diana Marmorstein, Ph.D.

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