PCRM Says Food Contamination Originates In Meat And Poultry

Tonight I received email from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (It's not that I'm special, I'm on their mailing list).

It's worthy of sharing, so here's the email in it's entirety.

Foodborne Infection Originates in Meat and Poultry

Ninety-seven percent of human disease from the pathogenic bacterium C. jejuni originates in animals farmed for meat and poultry, according to a study by researchers at Lancaster University, Lancaster, U.K. Researchers analyzed DNA from 1,231 cases of C. jejuni infections in Lancashire, England. Only 3 percent of cases were traced back to environmental contamination or wild animal sources, while 97 percent of cases were traced back to farm-raised chickens, cattle, and sheep. These results implicate livestock as the primary transmission route for the leading cause of gastroenteritis in the developed world, which is thought to infect 2 to 3 million people per year in the U.S. alone.

Wilson DJ, Gabriel E, Leatherbarrow AJ, et al. Tracing the source of campylobacteriosis. PLoS Genet. September 26, 2008;4(9):e1000203.

Wow. Let's repeat that... These results implicate livestock as the primary transmission route for the leading cause of gastroenteritis in the developed world, which is thought to infect 2 to 3 million people per year in the U.S. alone.

Sounds to me like another really good reason to give up eating meat!

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Comments

  1. I don’t think PCRM is much of an authority, I find the group a bit suspicious. Yes, this is probably a real fact, but I think it twists reality. Many cases and epidemics of food poisoning do originate from vegetables, like spinach and lettuce. And usually food poisoning from meat can be avoided by fully cooking the meat, while you aren’t going to cook your lettuce…

    I think there are enough reasons not to eat meat even without trying to come up with ones that can’t be fully defended.

    It should be noted that campylobacter can cause long-term illness. I knew someone who had been quite ill for years, including nausea that had made her lose lots of weight, but also fatigue and other symptoms. It was found to be a complication of a campylobacter infection she got while in Spain (traveller’s diarrhea). The last I heard from her she had got some meds that made her feel better, so hopefully she’s well now.

  2. What it is, the feces from the farm animals get in the water that irrigates the vegetables, which causes the e coli breakouts. The waste from the animals is a big problem. It is not properly contained.

  3. *laughs* So many good reasons to feel self-righteous in my vegandom :)

  4. Hi Maija,
    Re PCRM, they definitely have an agenda… but I buy into what they’re trying to accomplish.
    Your friend sounds like she’s had a really tough time.

    Hi Red,
    Yes that is one of the worst issues regarding CFOs.

    Hi Kim,
    Sometimes it’s all about validation, eh? :)

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