|By Robert Cohen Executive Director|
Time For Us To Clean Up Their Act
Today I offer you the problem and the solution. If we work together, we can make America a safer place. More than four thousand of you read this letter. Won't you please take time to make one phone call, or write to the appropriate party? Who is at risk? You, your children, your friends and relatives. Anybody who takes a sip of milk or piece of pizza or bite of milk chocolate. America has a problem. Our food is tainted by antibiotics. Laws are in place to protect us, but enforcement of safety issues plays second fiddle to political and financial considerations. Without your help, things will remain the same. Here's the story: Gentocin (sounds like gentle sin) is an antibiotic residue that remains within animal flesh and body fluids for 18 months. That is why its use is strictly prohibited in farm animals intended for America's food supply. Last week, I wrote a column about a book (Killers Within) that detailed emerging bacterial strains which cannot be killed by antibiotics because of a long history of use, misuse, and abuse. http://notmilk.com/thekillers.html Recognizing similar problems, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has developed and is coordinating the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS), along with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). In essence, what we have is a formula that does not work: NARMS = FDA + USDA + CDC. Gentocin is commonly given to cows to treat mastitis. The American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP), a 5,000 member organization of veterinarians who treat cow diseases, has requested that all use of gentocin in food animals cease. Their request is comical. It is against the law to use this antibiotic, yet licensed veterinarians continue to prescribe it. I recently learned that CDC tested one Pennsylvania slaughterhouse and determined that of all antibiotics found in tested samples, Gentocin had been found in nearly 38% of residues. CDC has a national testing program, and when antibiotics are found, 30% of the time it's Gentocin. Violation of antibiotic residue laws is so widespread, that enforcement of current laws would immediatly close America's milk and meat industries. Yesterday, I received this letter from a whistleblower: http://notmilk.com/gentocin.html In his letter, the whistleblower wrote: "In Colorado...despite repeated warnings from their local vet, (a dairy farm) continues to use the drug Gentocin in the treatment of mastitis on their milking cows. The vet has warned them that this drug is not labelled for use in dairy animals, especially lactating animals, but (the farmer)...simply laughs it off and says that inspectors no longer visit his farm." Please contact FDA and demand that they enforce their laws. I sent an EMAIL to FDA asking: "Does anybody read or respond to this email address?" Within five minutes, I received this response: "Are you the same Robert Cohen from notmilk.com?" Your EMAIL will be read!: FDA, Center for Veterinary Medicine firstname.lastname@example.org Please contact the state of Colorado: Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment Dan Trimberger email@example.com
Robert Cohen, author of: MILK A-Z
Executive Director (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Dairy Education Board
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