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Food Safety News

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188,000 Pounds of Chicken from Chile Recalled for Dioxin

U.S. officials say risk to consumers is 'negligible'

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service announced over the weekend that about 188,000 pounds of chicken imported from Chile is being recalled for potential dioxin contamination.

After the Chilean Ministry of Health found dioxin in chicken products, FSIS said it instructed importers to hold product from the country at the point of re-inspection. U.S. authorities believe 188,522 pounds of chicken may be affected and of that 126,082 is currently being held.

“The agency is investigating the distribution of the remaining 62,440, pounds and verifying if additional shipments are involved,” read the weekend announcement. “FSIS may expand the public notification and will take necessary and appropriate action after analyzing updated information received from the government of Chile.”

The agency said it had conducted an analysis of the Chilean test results and “determined that the risk to consumers is negligible,” but that the agency is continuing to track down where the product was distributed.

FSIS said it was issuing a public notification to “make the public aware of the situation” and the agency is not formally announcing a recall because “the establishment most directly associated with producing the adulterated product has recalled product and USDA works with its counterparts to conduct effectiveness checks in U.S. In this case, the Chilean Ministry of Health initiated a recall of this product.”

According to FSIS: Dioxins are a group of inorganic compounds that form naturally during forest fires, as well as from industrial emissions and burning trash. They are incorporated into plants and are potentially eaten by animals where they become concentrated in animal fat. People are exposed to low levels of dioxins through their diet with lesser exposure from air and soil. At very high doses for a prolonged period, dioxins can have adverse health effects. FSIS has determined that exposure to dioxin in the product is low and does not pose a health threat.

© Food Safety News
  • A.j. Dove

    Ok, but what am I looking for to identify these products?

    • Oginikwe

      Don’t eat chicken unless you know the grower. Mass produced chicken has lots of bad stuff in it even when it isn’t full of dioxin.

  • Oginikwe

    Why yes!! Dioxin won’t hurt you–eat it up. In fact, toxic sludge is good for you, too!

    MDNR Dioxin Information (Michigan DNR) 9/16/2011:
    http://www.michigan.gov/printerFriendly/0,1687,7-132-2945_5105_29181-113198–,00.html

    Part 1: Dioxins and Cancer: Fraudulent Studies http://www.ejnet.org/rachel/rhwn171.htm & Part 2:
    Gauging the Toxicity of Dioxin (Environmental
    Research Foundation) 3/7/1990: http://www.ejnet.org/rachel/rhwn173.htm

    Foodopoly: The Battle Over the Future of Food and
    Farming in America from Monsanto to Wal-Mart (Democracy Now!) 4/2/2013: http://www.democracynow.org/2013/4/2/foodopoly_the_battle_over_the_future

  • Qian Zheng Yi

    Short-term exposure of humans to high levels of dioxins may result in skin lesions, such as chloracne and patchy darkening of the skin, and altered liver function. Long-term exposure is linked to impairment of the immune system, the developing nervous system, the endocrine system and reproductive functions. Chronic exposure of animals to dioxins has resulted in several types of cancer. TCDD was evaluated by the WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in 1997. Based on animal data and on human epidemiology data, TCDD was classified by IARC as a “known human carcinogen”. However, TCDD does not affect genetic material and there is a level of exposure below which cancer risk would be negligible.

    http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs225/en/

  • Eric Powell

    Dairy and seafood products are also at risk. WHO has set a dioxin exposure level of 1-4 picograms per kilogram of body weight per day. Using updated scientific information, the EPA has set its threshold for safe dioxin exposure of 0.7 picograms per kilogram of body weight per day.

    Of course find a food without any health risk and you’ll be the richest person in the world! With the media reporting every detail about every food from every country in the world, the public has become overly sensitized to food safety. At the same time, the media (excluding scientific media such as Food Safety News) doesn’t fully educate the public. This leads to the public thinking they will all die a horrible, cancer-ridden death by eating a piece of chicken.

    Fact is, if the FSIS/EPA does not perceive dioxins as a significant health risk, why should we? These organizations have 30 years of data and many people researching. There is nothing I can do to better prepare myself other than reading their conclusions.

    Cook your food, wash your fruits and vegetables, and vote “yes” on ballots to promote food safety monitoring!

    • J T

      We don’t trust FSIS/EPA, Eric, because they do not work to serve the public’s health. They are controlled by mega-polluting mega-businesses, such as the oil and warfare industries. As long as EPA allows industries to frak and horrifically contaminate the most precious of natural resources, they do not deserve the slightest bit of our trust.

      • Eric Powell

        Perhaps I am a little more trusting in the EPA. What groups do you find are most worthy of your trust?

  • Toni

    What a waste. And what a waste of life. The entire food system is immoral. We must know the source of our food and how it was cared for (or not). Wendell Berry put it beautifully that he can not eat nor enjoy food from an animal whose life was made miserable in order to supply him with meat. We must continue the pressure on all groceries, food suppliers, etc. and educate, educate, educate people, especially children about food and where it comes from. This story makes me sick.

  • Gail Hotaling

    JUST WHAT IN HEAVENS NAME ARE PEOPLE SUPPOSED TO EAT? IT IS HARD ENOUGH ON THE ELDERY.WE LIVE ON FIXED INCOMES & THAT IS AFTER THEY TAKE YOUR TAXES &,HEALTH INS PREMIUNS FROM IT.THE GOVERNMENT HAS A BIG,BIG PROBLEM BUT THEN AGAIN SO HAVE WE.WE JUST CAME BACK FROM GROCERY SHOPPING & GUESS WHAT I BOUGHT ON SALE,RIB EYE STEAKS(WHICH I JUST FOUND OUT IS ALSO ON RECALL) I ALSO HAVE PACKAGES OF GROUND BEEF FROM PUBLIX IN THE FREEZOR. NOW ISN’T THIS A FINE KETTLE OF FISH( OH,I FORGOT,THERE IS A SHRIMP RECALL).THEN YOU HAVE YOUR VEGGIES(BAGGED SALADS),WHICH OF COURSE BRINGS INTO QUESTION WHOLE HEADS OF LETTUCE,RED CABBAGE,CARROTS & SO ON & SO ON!! NOW,HOW CAN YOU BE A VEGITARIAN IF THE VEGGIES,HUMMUS,CHEESES & EVERY THING BUT JUNK FOOD IS ,OR COULD,POTENTUALY BE POISONUS.THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE A BETTER WORLD.WELL,I FOR ONE,WOULD LOVE TO SEE THE “BIG WIGS” IN GOVERNMENT HAVE TO BUY THERE FOOD ON SALE OR IN REGULAR GROCERY STORES.AAH,BUT YOU CAN BET YOUR LAST DOLLAR THAT WON’T EVER HAPPEN.THEY CAN AFFORD HIGH PRICED ,SMALL ,UP STANDING BUTCHER SHOP’S & THE MORE PRIVETLY OWNED PRODUCE STORE’S.I WONDER HOW MANY OF THEM HAVE EVER HAD FOOD POISONING? I HAVE & BELIEVE ME THEY WOULD NOT LIKE IT ONE BIT!! I DO KNOW THAT CLEANLINESS & MORE STERILE PROCEDURE’S SHOULD BE PUT IN PLACE.ALSO, MORE BLOOD TEST’S & MEDICAL EXAM’S ON EMPLOYEE’S WOULB BE A GOOD THING TO HAVE IN PLACE. REMEMBER THE OLD SAYING,CLEANLINESS IS NEXT TO GODLINESS!!!!!!!! USDA,WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE!!!

  • justin

    The only thing that stands out to me in this is 188000 pounds… But then again im very young

  • Dioxination

    So-called “high” doses of dioxin are in the parts per TRILLION level. The FSIS is lying about the risk of dioxins. ALso, 2,3,7,8-TCDD, the most toxic dioxin, doesn’t get formed in forest fires.

  • Francisco

    In Chile don’t have recalls but i am sure will be re imported to Chile those contaminated products and sold in the domestic market without any warning doesn’t surprise this warning and great work are doing in the united states.