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Why This Matters: No one wants to have Thanksgiving ruined by foodborne illnesses that are preventable if you get the warning. So watch closely for any warnings and food recall notices that the government puts out.
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a family of chemicals that are linked to cancer and other illnesses and we’ve written numerous times about the extent of their contamination of drinking water in the U.S. (even at military bases) and the EPA’s slow response to regulate these toxins. Now a new analysis put out by […]
The Governor of Kentucky, Republican Matt Bevin, is considering whether to declare a state of emergency that would unlock resources to repair the dilapidated water system in Martin County, Kentucky deep in the heart of coal country. In the meantime, the residents there must buy bottled water or hope for donated water in order to keep from drinking the tap water while they wait for action.
The midwestern floods are responsible for a new threat to drinking water supplies, according to the Associated Press the flooding could contaminate more than 1 million private water wells. The National Ground Water Association, a trade group for the industry that includes well systems, told the AP that “there are 1.1 million private wells in 300 flooded counties in 10 states: Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, Kansas, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Kentucky.”
If you thought those frozen chicken nuggets from Perdue and Tysons Foods tasted terrible, there could be a reason why — they had bits of rubber and wood and unlabelled other products like milk (an allergen) in them. Consumers found pieces of “soft, blue rubber” inside the food and contacted Tysons; similarly, consumers found wood […]
The Revelator, a publication of the Center for Biological Diversity, reported on a new study that found that “fresh” groundwater is 50% less plentiful in several key U.S. regions than scientists previously believed. Therefore, digging deeper to find groundwater that is drinkable (not too salty or contaminated) is an increasingly infeasible answer to water shortages across the country.
Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the head of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has spent the better part of the last two days trying to reassure the public that food safety is not at risk during the shutdown. Yesterday and into today, through a series of tweets, Dr. Gottlieb explained (1) that routine food safety inspections are not taking place now; (2) that he is trying to get them re-started by next week – though he is not sure how to do it because FDA guidance requires routine inspections to cease when there is no funding; and that (3) high-risk food safety inspections are continuing. The key fact that most people don’t know is that there are very few food safety inspections in the U.S, which Politico’s Helena Bottemiller Evich pointed out in a story and in a devastating series of tweets.
Why This Matters: The good news is that your food is almost as safe now as it ever was. The bad news is that our safety inspection system is woefully underfunded and inadequate. But we should have already deduced that fact given the two deadly e-coli outbreaks in the last year. The law on food inspections is relatively strong, but not being fully implemented. And lax agricultural practices and health and safety regulations regarding pesticides and use of certain fertilizers create further loopholes that create more risk than most people realize.
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