You first heard about this topic from me in 1998. Now, it’s 2007…here we go again with the same dance, just a different song playing in the background. Many sports nutrition companies have been spiking/cutting protein for years. Did you ever wonder why some brands sitting in National Stores are so cheap? Guess what? They do not meet label claim and their products are ‘cut’ (adulterated) using such compounds as maltodextrin and sugar. NIR analysis was able to determine the difference between 100% whey protein concentrate and whey protein cut with maltodextrin and sugar. You may be able to fool a consumer, but you cannot fool science, especially if you have the technology.
I’m sure you have been keeping up with the news regarding contaminated pet food. However, this food was not contaminated; it was deliberately “spiked” (adulterated) to make the wheat gluten appear to contain more protein than it actually did. So what is this all about? For routine industry protein testing, scientists use the Keidel Method. The Keidel Method is very simple. The amount of nitrogen in a product is measured, and then the amount of protein is mathematically calculated based on the nitrogen levels. The problem is that the Chinese are very smart and developed a methodology to fool the test. They took good old rice flour and mixed in a chemical called Melamine. Melamine contains six nitrogen molecules, making it a perfect chemical to pull of this adulteration ploy.
Melamine is an organic compound that is often combined with formaldehyde to produce melamine resin, a synthetic polymer that is fire resistant and heat tolerant. Melamine resin is a very
versatile material with a highly stable structure. Uses for Melamine include whiteboards, floor tiles, kitchenware, fire retardant fabrics, and commercial filters. Melamine is 66% nitrogen (by mass) and is a metabolite of cyromazine, a pesticide Melamine is an organic base with the chemical formula C3H6N6, (1,3,5-triazine-2,4,6-triamine). But most important, Melamine is very cheap!
China Makes Arrest in Pet Food Case
by David Barboza
Published May 4, 2007
SHANGHAI, May 3 — The general manager of a Chinese company accused of selling contaminated wheat gluten to pet food suppliers in the United States has been detained by the Chinese authorities, according to police officials here and a person who was briefed on the investigation.
China Food Mislabeled, US Says (May 3, 2007)
The manager, Mao Lijun, head of the Xuzhou Anying Biologic Technology Development Company, is being held in coastal Jiangsu Province, about 320 miles northwest of Shanghai, though a police spokesman in the area, Pei County, declined to say on what charges. In a telephone interview a few weeks ago, Mr. Mao denied any knowledge of how melamine, an industrial chemical, had been mixed into pet food supplies sold under his company label earlier this year. He also insisted that his company had never exported any wheat gluten and that his products were sold only on the domestic market.
But regulators in the United States identified Xuzhou Anying and another Chinese company in nearby Shandong Province as the only sources of the contaminated ingredients that killed 16 dogs and cats, sickened thousands of others and led to one of the biggest pet food recall in American history.
Calls made to the other Chinese supplier under suspicion, the Binzhou Futian Biology Technology Company, went unanswered. Scientists are still trying to explain how melamine, a chemical used to make plastics, fertilizer and surface coatings but not considered very toxic, ended up in some of the leading American pet food brands.
The arrest of Mr. Mao may be an indication that the Chinese government is stepping up its own investigation into the scandal. It also seems to be trying to show a willingness to cooperate with
investigators from the Food and Drug Administration, who finally arrived in China on Monday — after China had initially refused to issue them visas.
Concerns about the quality and safety of China’s agricultural exports have prompted agency regulators to ban all wheat gluten from China and to warn importers to sample or test all food and
feed additives coming from there.
Last month, South Africa also announced a pet food recall after more than 30 dogs died from eating food contaminated with melamine-tainted ingredients imported from China. The Chinese government had initially reacted angrily to suggestions that Chinese food exports could have been the cause of death or sickness in so many American pets. At one point, the Chinese government even insisted that the country had not exported any wheat gluten to the United States this year.
People briefed on the United States investigation also complained that the Chinese government was reacting slowly to efforts by American regulators to obtain information, in addition to visas for entry. But last week, with the contaminant in pet food spreading to hogs in the United States, the government dropped the denial and insisted only that it was unlikely melamine could cause such
harm in pets. Last Friday, China also banned the use of melamine in vegetable proteins that are made for export or for use in domestic food.
There is still some question over the role of the Xuzhou company. Last week, the F.D.A. issued an import alert saying that the Chinese government had evidence that Xuzhou Anying was not the
manufacturer of the tainted wheat gluten but may have had as many as 25 wheat gluten suppliers. ChemNutra, a Las Vegas company that bought the wheat gluten and resold it to pet food makers in the United States, said it thought that Xuzhou was the manufacturer. Regulators also said that Xuzhou had failed to disclose to China’s export authorities that it was shipping food or feed products to the United States and thereby avoided having its goods checked by food inspectors.
The Xuzhou shipments to ChemNutra were made through another Chinese company, the Suzhou Textiles Silk Light Industrial Company.
Despite its denials of knowing anything about melamine contamination, Xuzhou appears to have sought to buy large supplies of melamine, even in the weeks after the pet food recall. The company had posted more than a dozen advertisements on the Internet seeking supplies of melamine scrap, the impure waste of an industrial chemical that animal feed producers here often mix into the feed to artificially increase the reading of the protein. Chinese producers use this practice, local experts here say, in an effort to elevate the level of protein to make a higher grade feed, even though the melamine has no nutritional value. On March 21, Xuzhou Anying had posted this message on an Internet trading site called EC21: “We urgently need a lot of melamine scrap.”
Despite the ban on melamine in vegetable protein, chemical companies in China continue to say they sell melamine scrap to animal feed companies and even to food companies that make bakery items. “Our chemical products are mostly used for additives, not for animal feed,” said Li Xiuping, manager at the Henan Xinxiang Huaxing Chemical Company in central Henan Province. “Melamine is mainly used in the chemical industry, but it can also be used in making cakes.”
China Makes Arrest In Pet Food Case
by David Barboza
Published May 4, 2007
Shanghai. May 3–The general manager of a Chinese company accused of selling contaminated wheat gluten to pet food suppliers in the United States has been detained by the Chinese authorities,
according to police officials here and a person who was briefed on the investigation.
So what does this mean for the dietary supplement industry?
More than likely, proteins you have been purchasing have been spiked with melamine or some alkaloid with a high nitrogen content to fool conventional protein testing. The FDA has listed the following protein that melamine has been found in; Wheat, Soy, Rice. But, what about milk and whey proteins. Have you ever noticed how some companies can sell their whey so cheap when the rest of the industry is 50% higher. Hum, I wonder how they can do this?
What has All American Pharmaceutical done to guarantee their proteins are pure and natural?
Dr. Jeff Golini has put together a melamine screen using the BOM Cluster Analysis to guarantee that all proteins produced by All American Pharmaceutical can be labeled as melamine free. All American Pharmaceutical can guarantee there proteins are real and not spiked or cut. Hey, we are producing at Pharmaceutical Grade, not feed or food grade. What about your other suppliers?