As it seems most of you do not reside in the D.C. area, you probably
wouldn't hear about the following, unless it happens to make the national
news (which it didn't as of this morning). From the Wash. Post:
Front page headline - "Area Grocers Balk at 'Genetic' Milk: Markets won't
carry product, citing controversy over hormone"
The major grocery chains in the area - Giant, Safeway, Shoppers Food
Warehouse and nearly all 7-elevens said they won't sell milk from
BST-treated cows because of controversy - they want to "avoid being
targeted by consumer groups that claim the milk is potentially harmful".
Companies mentioned that say they won't sell products from such milk were
Borden, Lifeline Food Co. and Ben & Jerry's.
The article stated that "cows forced to produce more milk tend to get more
udder infections" and mentions Jeremy Rifkin's assertion that milk from
BST-treated cows cannot be assumed to be safe. Monsanto's reply,
according to the article was "that's nonsense". Background and
explanation about how BST works, along with discussion of the other
genetically engineered products already on the market (drugs and cheese
enzyme) were provided.
Tbe article goes on to say that all the stores and companies pledging not
to sell/use milk from BST-treated cows noted that they will do their best
to avoid it, but can offer no legal guarantees, because it is impossible
to test for use of the drug (Posilac). A spokesman from 7-eleven was
quoted as saying that "they are asking their dairies to sign affidavits
that their cows have not received the hormone."
The FDA was also mentioned - "the agency is set to issue guidelines,
possibly today, on what milk producers that are not using the hormone can
say on their labels."
A spokesman from one of the dairy suppliers said he believes the milk is
safe, but that the stores are afraid of being targeted by what he termed
" 'a small group of extremists' who do not understand how the hormone works".
A Monsanto spokesman said the company will challenge claims that milk
produced with the use of supplemental BST is unsafe.
Should be an interesting next few days, weeks, months....
Just thought a number of you might be interested in this story.