FDA Ignores Tainted Imports

by Project Censored
Published: Updated:

Researched by Kerry Headley and Chelsea Davis

Tainted imports from China continue to threaten the safety of consumers due to nonbinding safety agreements between the US and China that allow shipments of toxic products into the US, including lead-tainted toys, salmonella-infected toddler snacks and DDT-contaminated seafood. Dozens of people died after receiving bad batches of the blood-thinning drug Heparin. While the Bush Administration sought continued trade promotion, inspections of overseas food factories declined by more than half from 2001 to 2007, and FDA inspectors routinely gave foreign drug makers a heads-up in advance of their visits, a courtesy not extended to US firms, according to the Government Accountability Office. In some cases, Chinese labs are permitted to conduct their own oversight. Chinese food exports to the US have quintupled over the past decade, while pharmaceutical exports have more than quadrupled.

“The Chinavore’s Dilemma” Joshua Kurlantzick, Mother Jones, September/October 2008 http://www.motherjones.com/news/feature/2008/09/exit-strategy-the-chinavores-dilemma.html