By Christopher Wanjek LiveScience's Bad Medicine Columnist LiveScience Wednesday, January 12, 2011
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will have you seeing red this year, but this time it's a good thing.
Since Jan. 5, the FDA has required food manufactures to disclose whether red cochineal beetles are among their products' ingredients. These beetles are farmed, harvested, dried and crushed to produce a red dye called carmine that, until this year, had been disguised in the ingredient list as "artificial color," "color added" or the all- encompassing "natural and artificial coloring."
Carmine provides pink, red and purple coloring to foods such as ice cream, yogurt, candy, and fruit drinks (should you permit that last one to be categorized as a food). Because of lax labeling laws, the extent of carmine in foods and drinks is not known.
Not that eating insects is necessarily gross. People around the world enjoy snacking, quite knowingly, on crickets, grasshoppers and ants, among many other bug-like creatures. And, really, God knows what crawfish are.
At issue is ambiguity in product labeling. "Natural and artificial coloring" means precious little. Why not just say that the food product contains "stuff" and call it a day? For example: Cheez Whiz? It contains a cheese-like substance and stuff. [Read: FDA Working to Replace Misleading Food Labels]
The problem, of course, is that many of us would like to know more about what stuff is in the stuff. Some people are highly allergic to cochineal extract and its primary chemical ingredient, carminic acid. The coloring has been tied to dozens of cases of anaphylactic shock and near-death, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), which petitioned the FDA way back in 1998 to require clearer labeling for cochineal-infused foods.
Vegetarians, kosher-conscious Jews and halal-conscious Muslims also stood to benefit from knowing about the deliberate presence of an insect in their food.
So the lightning-fast FDA swooped into action. Nearly 13 years after CSPI's petition, the FDA now requires manufacturers selling foods "that contain cochineal extract or carmine specifically declare the presence of the color additive by its respective common or usual name, 'cochineal extract' or 'carmine,' in the ingredient statement of the food label." A similar rule applies to cosmetics, such as lipsticks, also effective Jan. 5.
Carmine also is known commercially as Red 4. Unfortunately, many consumers confuse this with the far more common Red 40, as evidenced in the latter's nickname: "beetle juice." Red 40, called Allura Red AC in the food industry, is in really, really red foods and drinks such as Hawaiian Punch, and it is not an animal product.
Yes, vegetarians can breathe a sigh of relief that Red 40 comes from yummy, all-natural, organic petroleum, not beetles.
This brings us to the bigger question: Which is worse, natural or artificial food dyes? You may want to simply avoid food and drinks that glow in the dark.
More at: http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20110112/sc_livescience/foodsmadeofbeetlesnowmustsayso;_ylt=Am9D_mwqYpVEkGuRZXbeJpOs0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTFlbWM3dGxtBHBvcwMxMTIEc2VjA2FjY29yZGlvbl9zY2llbmNlBHNsawNmb29kc21hZGVvZmI-
Jai Maharaj, Jyotishi Om Shanti
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2011-01-12 13:28:10 EST
This reminds me of a series of events in america.
Some s. asians who came to america continued use of veggie alone diets. Some however began to suffer with vitamin b12 deficiencies.
Upon a closer look it was discovered that food standards in s. asia allowed much higher levels of animal parts, and droppings, in such foods as grain and other dried food items. Because beetles is the largest group of animals in the world no doubt many were included in those levels.
Vitamin b12 is the only vitamin that is found associated with animal products or their droppings alone.
American standards for animal parts, and droppings, were so low as to remove too much vitamin b12 from the diet of those coming from s. asia. Synthetic vitamin b12 solved the problem.
2011-01-12 16:12:31 EST
So now we have FOOD and BEETLES that speak?
2011-01-13 00:24:18 EST
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Posted from: The DemocRATs Hall of Shame! http://www.democrathallofshame.com/
2011-01-20 12:51:04 EST
On Wed, 12 Jan 2011 17:09:28 GMT, email@example.com and/or www.mantra.com/jai (Dr. Jai Maharaj) wrote:
>Foods Made of Beetles Now Must Say So > >By Christopher Wanjek >LiveScience's Bad Medicine Columnist >LiveScience >Wednesday, January 12, 2011 . . . >Yes, vegetarians can breathe a sigh of relief that Red 40 comes from >yummy, all-natural, organic petroleum, not beetles. > >This brings us to the bigger question: Which is worse, natural or >artificial food dyes?
· Vegans contribute to the deaths of animals by their use of wood and paper products, electricity, roads and all types of buildings, their own diet, etc... just as everyone else does. What they try to avoid are products which provide life (and death) for farm animals, but even then they would have to avoid the following items containing animal by-products in order to be successful:
The meat industry provides life for the animals that it slaughters, and the animals live and die as a result of it as animals do in other habitats. They also depend on it for their lives as animals do in other habitats. If people consume animal products from animals they think are raised in decent ways, they will be promoting life for more such animals in the future. People who want to contribute to decent lives for livestock with their lifestyle must do it by being conscientious consumers of animal products, because they can not do it by being vegan. From the life and death of a thousand pound grass raised steer and whatever he happens to kill during his life, people get over 500 pounds of human consumable meat...that's well over 500 servings of meat. From a grass raised dairy cow people get thousands of dairy servings. Due to the influence of farm machinery, and *icides, and in the case of rice the flooding and draining of fields, one serving of soy or rice based product is likely to involve more animal deaths than hundreds of servings derived from grass raised animals. Grass raised animal products contribute to fewer wildlife deaths, better wildlife habitat, and better lives for livestock than soy or rice products. ·
T. Howard Pines, Jr.
2011-01-20 15:14:06 EST
On 1/20/2011 9:51 AM, dh@. wrote: > On Wed, 12 Jan 2011 17:09:28 GMT, firstname.lastname@example.org and/or > www.mantra.com/jai (Dr. Jai Maharaj) wrote: > >> Foods Made of Beetles Now Must Say So >> >> By Christopher Wanjek >> LiveScience's Bad Medicine Columnist >> LiveScience >> Wednesday, January 12, 2011 > . . . >> Yes, vegetarians can breathe a sigh of relief that Red 40 comes from >> yummy, all-natural, organic petroleum, not beetles. >> >> This brings us to the bigger question: Which is worse, natural or >> artificial food dyes? > > · Vegans contribute to[blah blah blah]
"Getting to experience life" is not a benefit to farm animals.
2011-02-09 10:27:56 EST
I kill cockroaches and waterbugs in my house. I also slap mosquitos biting me.