Recent concern has been raised by the people asking questions about what’s in their food. Find out more about arsenic levels in chicken purchased at the supermarket.
By Tom Philpott for Mother Jones
Earlier this week, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced it would “voluntarily” stop selling a widely used arsenic-laced poultry feed additive, after FDA tests found traces of the poison in chicken meat.
So the system works, right? A federal regulatory agency conducts rigorous tests, detects a problem, and industry reacts by doing the right thing. Except, not so much. A closer look at the arsenic-laced feed saga reveals a tattered, industry-dominated regulatory regime that abuses public health and the environment alike.
The story goes like this. In the ’40s, the pharmaceutical industry began marketing a nifty new poultry feed additive bearing the charming name of roxarsone. The chemical helped control parasitic ailment common to chickens called coccidiosis. But that was just part of its appeal. As the poultry-processing industry consolidated into the hands of just a few companies over the post-war decades, poultry farmers had to scale up and fatten their chickens as quickly as possible. Roxarsone helped with that, too—it’s a growth enhancer. What’s more, it contributes to that rosy-pink hue consumers have come to associated with fresh chicken meat.
. . . . . .
Continue reading this article on Mother Jones Website.