US food and export controls

It looks like India is still not too happy with the safety controls used by Coke and Pepsi for their products:

Researchers at the Center for Science and Environment, an independent group, say they have conducted various studies that clearly show pesticide residues in Coca Cola and Pepsi products in India were 24 times higher than European Union standards.

Both companies have categorically denied this charge, amid assertions that their products are safe and pose no risk to human health.

However, they have mostly failed to convince local health officials in many parts of the country. The cola companies have been ordered by the Indian Supreme Court to reveal the contents of their products within the next six months.

Hard not to tie that story together with the latest row over tainted rice exports to Europe as explained here and here:

Late last week, the European Commission was notified by Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns of trace amounts of unauthorized genetically modified (GMO) rice detected in long grain samples that were targeted for commercial use. It was the first time that unmarketed genetically engineered rice had been found in rice used in the U.S. commercial market. Although U.S. authorities have assured Brussels that there is no environmental or human health risk, either from food or animal feed, Commission experts are urgently seeking more information — with a possible view to import restrictions.

If these things are being caught during export, and by foreign agencies with strict health standards, certainly makes you wonder about domestic controls (and the public’s want of full disclosure)…my guess is that even if the EU demands change, other big importers of US long-grain rice like Iraq will not object.

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