The Ecology of Humans (59-4) Cleanliness and Contamination

Cleanliness and Contamination

United States governments at all levels do very little to ensure a safe food supply. The national FDA countenances “natural contaminants” in processed food.

A small glass (100 grams) of tomato juice may legally have “10 or more fly eggs,” or, for extra protein, “5 or more fly eggs and 1 or more maggots.” A jar of peanut butter (0.5 liters/18 ounces) may have approvingly stirred in 145 bug parts or 5 or more rodent hairs.

For those eating a lot of processed foods, annual consumption may be 0.5 to 1 kilo of flies, maggots, and mice. The FDA considers the issue one of “aesthetics.”

The answer is to buy fresh food, and otherwise inspect carefully any packaged food for contaminants. Peace of mind may be had in considering that foreign microbes in minute quantities keeps the immune system active and trained.