Thursday, April 19, 2012

Thinking Toxic Chemicals Again

This week brought not one, but two articles in mainstream media regarding the omnipresence of toxic chemicals in our environment and in non-organic food.

The article “Don’t Believe that Label” in The Atlantic even links to Silent Spring Institute for tips on greening your cleaning and personal care products. The second piece deals with noxious plastic packaging and appeared in the Washington Post. “The whole system is stacked in favor of the food and packaging companies and against the protecting of public health,” Nudelman, of the Breast Cancer Fund, is quoted as having said. Of course, the American Chemical Council makes its asinine assertions that “there is no cause for concern.” Does anyone still believe them??

I’m glad to see my younger daughter is now Facebooking this stuff, too. She linked to the WaPo article so her friends could become informed, noting, “Researchers have found traces of styrene, a likely carcinogen, in instant noodles sold in polystyrene cups. They’ve detected nonylphenol — an estrogen-mimicking chemical produced by the breakdown of antioxidants used in plastics — in apple juice and baby formula. They’ve found traces of other hormone-disrupting chemicals in various foods: fire retardants in butter, Teflon components in microwave popcorn, and dibutyltin — a heat stabilizer for polyvinyl chloride — in beer, margarine, mayonnaise, processed cheese and wine. They’ve found unidentified estrogenic substances leaching from plastic water bottles.”

This is all very shocking. Why is it still going on? Because the FDA has been infiltrated by people who support the interests of Big Ag and chemical companies, like Monsanto.

I decided to print out the WaPo article for Wellfleet Marketplace management. I understand how difficult it is for shopkeepers to avoid these chemicals. Difficult? Impossible.

Wellfleet Marketplace does a good job of providing a selection for folks who must eat gluten-free. It's also possible to buy grass-fed local beef from a farm in Truro. Some organic food is for sale, too. On the door, there’s a sign, albeit, SMALL, suggesting shoppers bring their own bags. Still, I feel more must be done.

I went in to deliver the article yesterday, but the manager was out. At the cash register, the cashier pulled out a "cornstarch" bag for the customer in front of me.

"No thanks," the young man said. "I go green."

Wouldn't it be nice if everyone in town adopted this attitude?