Contaminated imported Catfish from China

Contaminated imported Catfish from China

china fish farm
Irrigation ditch or pond systems for raising fish?

 
May 25, 2016 – New Hampshire Jeanne Shaheen (D) wants to stop in inspection of Catfish saying the chance of getting sick according to the FDA is low risk food, clamming it’s a ploy to protect U.S. farms, and jobs, even though inspections have found catfish coming in and being sold to restaurants and stores are sometimes contaminated.

Fish used to be one of the healthiest foods on the planet, but pollution and farming perversions have made most fish a highly unhealthy food, and some types of farmed fish the most toxic food on the planet.

In China farmers have coped with the toxic waters by mixing illegal veterinary drugs and pesticides into fish feed, which helps keep their stocks alive yet leaves poisonous and carcinogenic residues in seafood, posing health threats to consumers.

But last year Wicker said that while the inspection program was handled by the FDA, the agency inspected only 2% of catfish.

Today the Senate voted on final passage to stop the inspection.

Not surprisingly, in a close vote Senators who are for free trade, and not for the protection of U.S. health and jobs voted to killed the inspections by the USDA.
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Environmental degradation, in other words, has become a food safety problem, and scientists say the long-term risks of consuming contaminated seafood could lead to higher rates of cancer and liver disease and other afflictions.

“We’re pretty sure about domestic catfish,’’ Wicker said Monday. “We just want all the fish consumed in the United States to be as safe as domestically produced fish.’’

US raised Catfish is 100% inspected, but not imported fish.

farm

The switch to the USDA was part of the 2008 farm bill, but the change didn’t take effect until March 1 for domestic inspections and April 15 for imports.

McCain’s resolution, introduced with Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., would nullify a rule published in December that set up a mandatory USDA inspection program for catfish.

Other cosponsors include Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas.

Supporters of McCain’s proposal said leaving the inspection program with the USDA could create barriers for imports, hurt international trade relations and increase the price of catfish.

“The USDA catfish inspection office is a prime example of powerful senators siding with a handful of special interests at the expense of taxpayers,’’ said Joshua Sewell, senior policy analyst for Taxpayers for Common Sense. “It should be eliminated immediately.”

Other opponents of McCain’s resolution noted that at least two recent shipments of contaminated catfish have been rejected since the rule was enacted.

“It is clear that the inspection rule is working as intended to protect U.S. consumers,’’ Cochran said Tuesday. “Congress was right in twice mandating these inspections, and reconsidering that decision would be a poor use of the Senate’s time.’’

Over objections from Mississippi’s Republican senators, the Senate voted Tuesday to begin debate on a measure to end catfish inspections by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Sens. Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker were scrambling early this week for support to kill the resolution — proposed by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. — to remove a catfish inspection program from the USDA’s jurisdiction. The tally was 57-40 to advance the bill.

Cochran and Wicker won their earlier fight to move the inspection program from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to the USDA, which they said does a better job protecting consumers against contaminated catfish.

“The USDA is the most experienced, well-equipped agency to ensure farm-raised meat products, including catfish, are as safe as possible,’’ Cochran said on the Senate floor Tuesday before the vote.

But opponents said taking the inspection responsibility away from the FDA was designed only to protect Mississippi catfish farmers. Catfish farming is major business in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi and other states.

“The true purpose of the catfish program is to create a trade barrier to protect a small handful of catfish farmers in two or three Southern states,’’ McCain said on the Senate floor last week.

McCain called Tuesday’s vote a victory for taxpayers. He has complained it cost $20 million to set up the USDA program.

“This is more than a vote on catfish…It’s about government overriding the taxpayers of America,” he said.

McCain said the switch to the USDA was engineered in part by “powerful appropriators.” Cochran is the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Wicker said moving the inspection program to the USDA was designed to protect consumers from the dangers of imported catfish that have been found to contain Illegal antibiotics, heavy metal and other carcinogens. He singled out Vietnam.

“We inspect it for the consumer,” Wicker said after Tuesday’s vote. “We want to make sure that at restaurants, in grocery stores, in our homes we are not consuming contaminated and adulterated product.”

Wicker said that while the inspection program was handled by the FDA, the agency inspected only 2% of catfish.

“We’re pretty sure about domestic catfish,’’ Wicker said Monday. “We just want all the fish consumed in the United States to be as safe as domestically produced fish.’’

The switch to the USDA was part of the 2008 farm bill, but the change didn’t take effect until March 1 for domestic inspections and April 15 for imports.

McCain’s resolution, introduced with Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., would nullify a rule published in December that set up a mandatory USDA inspection program for catfish. Other cosponsors include Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas.

Supporters of McCain’s proposal said leaving the inspection program with the USDA could create barriers for imports, hurt international trade relations and increase the price of catfish.

“The USDA catfish inspection office is a prime example of powerful senators siding with a handful of special interests at the expense of taxpayers,’’ said Joshua Sewell, senior policy analyst for Taxpayers for Common Sense. “It should be eliminated immediately.”

Other opponents of McCain’s resolution noted that at least two recent shipments of contaminated catfish have been rejected since the rule was enacted.

“It is clear that the inspection rule is working as intended to protect U.S. consumers,’’ Cochran said Tuesday. “Congress was right in twice mandating these inspections, and reconsidering that decision would be a poor use of the Senate’s time.’’
 
Credit marygreeley.com

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