Food safety has become a major public health issue. When it comes to the economy, and public health are being compromised by the government. Such cases have come up in the Netherlands.
In 2002, at a feed company, the contraceptive agent MPA and growth hormone 17-beta ended up in the animal feed that was marketed among thousands of farmers. This caused a lot of damage in pig farming and the feed sector. Farmers went bankrupt. The feed and meat controls failed. This had consequences for the health of consumers. But, the government, instead of initiating a legal remedy, concealed the threat and covered up the incident for years!
Why did the Dutch government conceal the scope of food fraud scandal, violate European legislation and did not investigate the health consequences?
All stakeholders prefer to take a big step back when it comes to controlling and enforcement of food safety in Europe. It is precisely EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) that should present itself to this subject. The European Commission found deviating from European legislation that ensures food safety, particularly the Council Directive 96/22/EC (concerning the prohibition on the use in livestock farming of certain substances having a hormonal or thyrostatic action and ß-agonists) and 96/23/EC (on measures to monitor substances and residues in live animals and animal products). The issue poses a severe risk to public health.
The Member State of the Netherlands has its own tolerance policy, in particular, the banned chemical (poison) policy on food safety that goes against the EU legislation. In 2017, the Council of State allowed the use of chemical residues in food that goes to the food chain. The Dutch Minister for Agriculture and Public Health also confirms this policy in 2017 with of cancer, diabetes, heart and vascular depression, obesity and birth defects. EFSA also has a tolerance policy that is allowed to deviate from European Food Safety legislation and which are mentioned in EU legislation and yet go into the food chain. It will also be ratified in 2017 by the Dutch Minister of Agriculture Carola Schouten and Minister Bruins of Public Health.
About 70% of these products from Dutch livestock farming sent for export, which should alarm the importing countries. Use of multiple chemical (growth) the carcinogenic 17-beta-estradiol and MPA are found to be used in the animal feed in Dutch livestock farming The hormone Medroxy-Progesterone Acetate (MPA) is contained in pills from the pharmaceutical company Wyeth, one of the controversial medicines for which Pfizer, the company in which Wyeth was absorbed, has since bought off nearly one billion dollars in claims for damages. In 2002, the prohibited hormone MPA entered the human food chain and the feed of millions of pigs. The Dutch government kept the information about the health risks and how the Irish pharmaceutical company Wyeth brought the mess into the world.
These hormones suppress maintaining pregnancy, affect on fertility, effects on metabolism, stimulates fat deposition, effect on sugar metabolism, increases insulin levels, increases glycogen storage in the liver affect on serum lipids, on the central nervous system (depression, insomnia, headache, fatigue, visual disturbances, reduced libido, reduced aggression) effects on the immune system. MPA causes breakthrough vaginal bleeding, breast sensitivity / enlargement, weight gain, appetite changes, changes to cervix, edema, mood changes, Ilibido change, coughing / shortness of breath, milk flow, nausea, staying away from menstruation, increased risk of thrombosis, decrease in glucose tolerance (dangerous with diabetes) altered liver function, jaundice, fatigue, abdominal pain, headache, insomnia, skin reaction, depression. Recent research shows that long-term use of MPA and CEE (conjugated) as a hormone replacement therapy in healthy women leads to a larger risk of heart disease, pulmonary embolism, stroke and breast cancer. MPA is excreted in breastfeeding is therefore not recommended
The United States asked the questions to the Netherlands about of chemical hormones, which were then denied. Later its use was acknowledged and presence of MPA was admitted.
Is it the weakness of European as well as that of the world institutions such as EFSA, WHO, European Union, Savory Food Safety International, World Food Safety Organization, World Organization for Animal, Finnish Food Safety Authority, European Commission, Food and Agriculture Organization, European Chemicals Agency, etc. cease to intervene? Or is it the strength of chemical and food companies to "steer" this through the lobby so that these practices can take place in their benefits? The world and at least Europe should have a well-functioning control system with sufficient decisiveness and possibilities to intervene. European Court of Human Rights accepts that banned chemicals in EU are tolerated in the food system with the known dangers of cancer, especially breast cancer, diabetes, depression, mood swings, obesity, cardiovascular diseases, and birth defects. These dangers are indicated by the Dutch government itself.
After 15 years, the Netherlands officially states that even residual values of chemical growth hormones and contraceptives present in Dutch meat that is sold to the consumer. The government, semi-Government, association of animal feed, companies and several interest groups of the Dutch livestock kept this secret, trying to ensure that nothing public and transparent may become. After many years of structural use of pharmaceutical waste and residuals, it is now unearthed that there are chemical contraceptives in products of the Dutch (cattle) livestock farming with about 30,000 livestock farms following the practice.
The fact that the pharmaceutical waste and residual flows in a demonstrable amount in Dutch animal products has been allegedly ignored. The Dutch government points at the dangers of cancer (in particular breast cancer), diabetes, depression, mood swings, obesity, cardiovascular disease, and birth defects, oppression of immune systems, and making the body more prone to multiple disorders. The European Commission opposes residual values of the pharmaceutical industry (contraception and growth hormones) in food for people. In accordance with 96/22 / EC and 96/23 / EC, there is an absolute zero standard. The role of the government is of policy maker, supervisor, licensing authority and enforcer, but the government has some unlawful deal with the economic aspects that may conflict with legislation and environmental laws. For example, in a number of cases the Netherlands found to be allowing chemical waste and residual flows from chemical groups Dutch food chains. The Dutch criminal investigation department also makes administrative integrity a matter of discussion.
European laws and regulations, such as 98/179/EC (Commission Decision of 23 February 1998 laying down detailed rules on official sampling for the monitoring of certain substances and residues thereof in live animals and animal products) and the use of laboratories research equipment with accreditation for food safety are not followed. Of course, one can ask whether EFSA and the European Commission plays a supporting role in these disparities in law. They should have checked when it became known for years, the structural practices of food which do not comply with European law and regulations. One can question whether the European Commission, EFSA, Europol, Eurojust, and the United States have been informed by the Netherlands of chemical hormones and pharmaceutical waste and residual streams foodstuffs. A complaint to the National Ombudsman was justified due to a violation of the required transparency by the Ministry of Economics. The recommendation by the NL Ombudsman, for more transparency and openness puts the Dutch Ministry at a question. That comes a few years later, in 2017 via the Council of State. Also in 2017 by Ministry Agriculture and Public Health to the Lower House indicated that they are indeed European legislation on food safety, 96/22 / EC and 96/23 / EC that are not followed.
Author Jack Gommers
A farmer-turned-activist who has been advocating against the use of chemicals and hormones in food industry.