Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Decision On Irradiated Food Due Today

13 September 2001

Green Party Health Spokesperson Sue Kedgley is calling on the Health Minister to block the first ever approval for irradiated food when it is considered at a top-level meeting today.

Australian and New Zealand Health Ministers will decide whether or not to accept a recommendation which would allow irradiated herbs, spices, herbal teas, peanuts, almonds, cashew nuts and pistachio nuts to be sold in New Zealand and Australia.

Ms Kedgley said she was astounded that the Australian New Zealand Food Authority (ANZFA) was recommending an end to the ban on food irradiation, and said Mrs King should speak out against allowing irradiated food into New Zealand.

"Irradiation is an unproven and highly controversial food technology that sterilises food by exposing it to radiation doses 100,000 to 3 million times the strength of a chest X-ray," Ms Kedgley said.

"There is no need to use this controversial technology, as there are effective, safe, environmentally friendly alternative treatments such as steam treatment, oxygen deprivation, temperature control and freezing."

Ms Kedgley said she was especially alarmed at the ANZFA proposal to allow herbs to be irradiated to three times the internationally accepted maximum dose of 10 kGY.

"I am astonished that our food authority is recommending that we allow food that has been irradiated to a level that is way in excess of internationally accepted standards in our food supply --particularly when there have been no studies of the long term health effects of consuming irradiated food," Ms Kedgley said.

"Irradiation does not destroy viruses such as those that cause hepatitis, the prions that cause BSE or pathogenic bacteria such as listeria. It reduces the nutritional value of food and destroys vitamins (C, A, E and thiamine) by up to 10-20 percent, along with fatty acids in food that are crucial for good health.

"Irradiation can change the taste, colour and texture of foods and hide odours that would indicate food is spoiled. It can also be used to substitute good manufacturing practices and cover up bacterial contamination in food.

"Although the technology has been available for decades, it is only now trickling into supermarkets in the United States because of widespread consumer resistance to buying it," she said.

Ends


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Fate Of Julian Assange


Has swapping Scott Morrison for Anthony Albanese made any discernible difference to Australia’s relations with the US, China, the Pacific and New Zealand? Not so far. For example: Albanese has asked for more time to “consider” his response to New Zealand’s long running complaints about the so called “501” deportations back to this country. Really? He needs more time to figure out a response? OK, but the clock is ticking.
The Julian Assange situation is a lot more urgent. Assange’s deportation to the United States has now been okayed by the British courts and also - crucially – by its government. At any moment, Assange could be on a plane and headed for a US prison. He is facing the prospect of 175 years in jail...
More>>



 
 


Parliament: Grounds Fully Reopened

Parliament’s grounds have been fully reopened today at a ceremony and community event with mana whenua, members of the public, and representatives of Parliament... More>>


Chris Hipkins: Statement On Charlotte Bellis

On 31 January I released a statement regarding Charlotte Bellis and her MIQ application. I stated that emergency allocation criteria includes a requirement to travel to New Zealand within the next 14 days... More>>



Government: Prime Minister To Travel To Europe And Australia

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern will leave this weekend to travel to Europe and Australia for a range of trade, tourism and foreign policy events... More>>

ALSO:



National: Goodfellow To Retire As Party President
Peter Goodfellow today announced he will not seek re-election as President of the National Party at its Annual Conference. Mr Goodfellow will remain as a director on the board for one final term to assist in the transition... More>>

Police: Parliament Occupation Investigators Seek Public Assistance
Police investigating criminal activity on the final day of the occupation at Parliament grounds earlier this year are appealing for the public’s help to identify 15 people... More>>

World Vision: New Zealand Urged To Meet Quota As New Report Finds Hunger, Violence, And Death Rates Increase For Refugees
World Vision is calling for New Zealand to work harder to meet its refugee quota in the wake of a new report which shows that life has deteriorated significantly in the past two years for refugees in 11 hard-hit countries... More>>