Sewage Sludge in the News

The Food Rights Network will be on vacation from January 1 – January 13. Happy New Year, and look for the next “Sewage Sludge in the News” on Wednesday, January 18!

  • Lehigh County Pennsylvania Residents Allege Local Sludge-Spreading Has Made Their Well Water Undrinkable: According to NBC Philadelphia (12/28), “Several Lynn Township, Pa. farmers use a bio-solid called ‘granulite’ to fertilize their crops, according to township authorities. ‘Granulite’ is sewage sludge turned into dried pellets, 30 percent of which is made of human waste. Residents like Bill Schaffhouser fear the health effects when this chemically-treated sewage fertilizer seeps into the ground and water. . . . Schaffhouser says that he and his neighbors can no longer drink their water because the sewage fertilizer has seeped into the drinking water, the storm drains and the nearby creek.”
  • Site Contaminated by “Composted” Los Angeles Sewage Sludge Shows High Levels of Zinc, Copper and Sulfur: According to the blog “Root Simple” (12/27), “Ecological designer Darren Butler, at a class I was sitting in on, showed a soil report from a site that had used compost from the city of Los Angeles. LA’s compost contain biosolids, a euphemism for sewage. The soil test showed high levels of: zinc 196 ppm; copper 76 ppm; [and] sulfur 5,752 ppm. The problem isn’t human waste, it’s all the other stuff that ends up in the sewer.” (more…)

Leave a Comment December 28, 2011

Raw Milk in the News

Leave a Comment December 22, 2011

Raw Milk in the News

  • Mark McAfee’s Organic Pastures Raw Milk Recalled and Quarantined: On Tuesday, 11/15, Mark McAfee got word that his California dairy’s raw milk, which is drunk by about 75,000 people each day, is being recalled and quarantined (see McAfee’s second 11/16 comment on the above-linked page of David Gumpert’s The Complete Patient blog).
    Gumpert points out in an 11/17 update that “raw dairy, in particular, is often singled out for special attention, and special punishment” as compared to the sources of other outbreaks of foodborne illness, such as the recent cantaloupe outbreak.
    Organic Pastures (OPDC) is licensed for the sale of raw milk by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). The milk is being recalled because five California children have been sickened by E. coli 0157:H7 over an eight week period, three of whom were hospitalized with hemolytic uremic syndrome (The Complete Patient blog, 11/15). According to the CDFA, “the only common reported food exposure is unpasteurized (raw) milk from Organic Pastures dairy.”
    According to a The Complete Patient blog interview with McAfee, “all pathogen tests completed on the dairy’s products by the public health authorities and a private lab commissioned by OPDC have been negative. In addition[, McAfee says], ‘It has been reported to us by the California Department of Public Health that as of today all products collected from the ill patients have been negative for E. Coli O157:H7.’”
    On Wednesday, 11/16, OPDC filed an appeal with the CDFA “to lift the recall and quarantine for ten days ‘while samples of dairy products, and environmental testing is completed.’” The appeal implicates the “at least 140 cow share programs” in California that do not have CDFA licenses.
    The implication from a comment posted by McAfee today is that the appeal did not succeed. His comment explains, “CDFA handed us a Notice of Violation today with 14 things we need to correct prior to reinstatement…last week we were operating just fine.”
    In an update posted today (11/17) on The Complete Patient, Gumpert calls McAfee’s “inference that herdshare operations could be the source of the current E.coli O157:H7 outbreak… ill advised, inappropriate, and almost certainly wrong,” but adds that McAfee has “never avoided even the toughest questions” and that “he’s shown a genuine commitment to truly serious food safety standards.” See The Complete Patient for more news as it breaks. (more…)

Leave a Comment November 17, 2011



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