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Phoenix Organics Calls For Aspartame Investigation

14 March 2008

Media statement: For immediate release

Phoenix Organics Calls On Government Agencies, Coke, To Fund Aspartame Scan

Phoenix Organics’ CEO Stefan Lepionka has committed $2000 to help send Abby Cormack to the U.S. to undergo a series of SPECT scans aiming to prove aspartame consumption has an effect on brain function, and wants Govt and Coca Cola to do the same.

“If it can be demonstrated that the consumption of aspartame has an impact on brain function, then that makes a mockery of NZ Food Safety Authority claims – and the public statements of Coca Cola Managing Director George Adams – that aspartame poses no danger to the public, even at high doses,” said Stefan Lepionka.

The total cost of the scans, and airfares and accommodation for Abby is $10,000.

“We have contributed $2000 and want to see the NZ Food Safety Authority, or Food Safety Australia New Zealand and most importantly, Coca Cola Ltd to contribute $2000.

“$2000 for Coca Cola would represent a fraction of the amount they recently paid for full page advertisements asserting the safety of this chemical,” said Stefan Lepionka.

“It would be a small price to pay to put to rest global concerns that aspartame is dangerous.”

Charlies and Phoenix Organics’ advertising agency Consortium has also committed $1000 to the cost of the scans.

The scans will be carried out by J. Michael Uszler, M.D., Medical Director of Nuclear Medicine at Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center and Assistant Clinical Professor of Medical and Molecular Pharmacology at UCLA. Dr. Uszler has been actively involved in SPECT imaging for 20 years, with a particular focus on the brain since 1992. Dr Ken Stoller MD said that the aim of the experiment is “to show that ingestion of aspartame causes an aberration of the blood flow to parts of Abby's brain. This is significant because it will be the first time anyone has documented the correlation between aspartame ingestion symptoms and functional brain imagining.”

The New Zealand Food Safety Authority has not commissioned a single independent study on aspartame. It was approved in NZ a year after it was approved in the US.

A recent review of 500 studies (called meta-analyses) commissioned by the EUFSA (European Food Safety), found once again aspartame was ‘safe’, despite over 10,000 complaints to the FDA and an admission by NZ Food Safety Authority’s own toxicologist before the Health Select Committee that aspartame ‘could make some people sick.’

The Magnuson review was led by two doctors from medical consultancy Burdock Group (www.burdockgroup.com) which prides itself on ‘fusing science and compliance’ and trumpets the fact that ‘selecting the right product strategy is the key to success.’

Industry funded reviews always find that aspartame is safe. The Magnuson study was actually funded by Ajinomoto – a Japanese company that is the largest manufacturer of… aspartame.

Asking the industry to find against a multi-billion dollar chemical that is in over 6000 products is like asking the Burmese Government to investigate human rights abuses said Stefan Lepionka.

“Somehow you just know that everything is going to be sweetness and light.

Perhaps a more pertinent example would have been to ask the NZ Government 20 years ago whether there was any risk posed to veterans in Vietnam by the use of Agent Orange.

Back then this chemical was declared safe by government agencies too.


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