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Posts Tagged ‘used’

Dangerous chemicals have been used in food for years

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 at 4:05 am

After Chinese media stated that their satay might contain a toxic cancer-causing substance, a number of individuals are now feeling sick after eating the satay.

Chemicals found in Kim Bien Market. Chefs have used these chemicals for years in making food (Photo: SGGP)

Chefs at sidewalk restaurants have used additives and chemicals in food for many years, as buying these chemicals are easy and inexpensive.


A Sai Gon Giai Phong journalist toured one of the biggest wholesale markets in Ho Chi Minh City – Kim Bien Market in District 5.


Chemicals including liquids to bleach, chemicals to create coffee foam and colorings, and chemicals to make chicken and goat meat crispier were found in nylon bags and bottles.

One retailer said that chefs should use one spoonful of these chemicals in order to make the food crispier.


At another shop, the owner said chefs have used additives and spices to make pho (Rice noodle soup with beef) and bun bo (Beef rice noodles).


She stated she sells more than 50 liters of beef to eateries in a week. She said that a one-liter bottle of additives priced at VND250, 000 could be used to cook 100 big pots of rice noodle soup or beef rice noodles.


The situation is much the same at Binh Tay Market in District 6. A shop assistant told a journalist that he uses a red powder in varnishing cooked crab rice noodles. She compared the cost of these chemical to only VND50, 000, while food colorings would cost six times more to buy. 


After the news became public, the Food Hygiene Department in Ho Chi Minh City, told the market management boards not authorize any shop to sell Chinese satay and spices for cooking ‘pot-au-feu’.


However, much Vietnamese food is package in nylon, without any clear indication of its origin and no labeling on the food product were available at several of market stores.

Source: SGGP

Toxic pesticides used by vegetable farmers

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 at 4:04 am

Verdant veggies  farms in an outskirt district in Hanoi. However, many containers of pesticides found discarded in fields, canals, ditches and ponds in the vicinities of farms.( Photo: SGGP)

Bitter cold weather in northern parts of the country has badly affected agricultural produce, leading to a shortage of supply of fresh vegetables as demand increases for the oncoming Tet holiday season (Lunar New Year). 


This has led some farmers to take advantage of the situation and toxic stimulants and pesticides are being added to increase farm produce, regardless of their affect on the health of people.


Mindless of the weather, many farmers in the outskirts of Hanoi in areas like Tay Tuu, La Ca, La Tinh, Thinh Liet, and Van Canh seemed to use excessive pesticides.


Many containers of pesticides with Vietnamese and Chinese labels were found discarded in fields, canals, ditches and ponds in the vicinities of farms.


Ms. Hanh in Tu Liem district said that farmers used artificial growth stimulants made in China for insect control, as insects devastated crops and along with this they used nitrate fertilizer to grow longer leaves in veggies as well as speed up quick growth. This resulted in veggies growing within a short time and giving an artificial and lush appearance.


Hanh revealed that her colleagues used excessive pesticide to grow swamp morning-glory, which was once an exclusive summer seasonal vegetable but now farmers grew it round the year.


Normally it takes 15-20 days to harvest swamp morning-glory but farmers now harvest the veggie in just a few days by spraying fertilizers and stimulants every two or three days. 

A kind of artificial growth stimulant farmers usually spray in their vegetable fields (photo: SGGP)

Farmers used these artificial growth stimulants from China instead of the permitted ones allowed on the list issued by agriculture authorities because they were so much cheaper. Farmers can net more profit by growing swamp morning-glory than paddy (rice).


Ms. Hoat, a farmer in La Ca village which is famous for growing this special vegetable believes farmers began planting swamp morning-glory instead of  rice five years ago because they could earn more money.


She also revealed a separate piece of land where she grew veggies for her family on which she did not spray pesticide or growth stimulants.


The government certainly needs to step up action to stop such rampant use of pesticides and growth stimulants. People face a health risk and even though farmers understand the consequences of excess use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides in vegetable they continue to be lured by enormous profits.

Source: SGGP

Relevant authorities found indifferent to toxic stimulants used on vegetables

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 at 4:03 am

Authorized organizations have showed a lack of investigation into some farmers that use pesticides and other stimulants to increase the amount and size of their farm produce.

This is the kind of artificial growth stimuli that farmers have used in spraying their vegetable crops (photo: SGGP)

Bui Si Doanh, head of the Plant Protection Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said that all stimulants contain a toxic Giberellic acid, which might be poisonous for humans.


When the stimulants have penetrated deep into the plant cells, washing the vegetables, will not remove the stimulant, he said.


A recent research has revealed that the childless rate in Vietnam is 8 percent of the country’s population. One possibly reason for this, is the application of toxic chemicals, used in food production.


According to the department, there are two types of stimulants used in vegetables and fruits. One stimulant is within an acceptable level, permitted by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.


The other is an illegal import from China. This stimulant is brought through Tan Thanh border gate, in the northern province of Lang Son.


The contraband stimulants are packed with Chinese labels that Vietnamese farmers cannot read. The information the farmers are receiving is that this stimulants, help grow their vegetables much faster.


Each time the public raises concerns about the stimulants contained in the vegetables, the Plant Protection Department and the Ministry of Health, just collect test samples and instruct farmers not to use the chemicals.  They have not sent investigators to directly examine the sales and usage of toxic stimulants.


Mr. Bui Si Doanh said that the Plant Protection Department has been asked to investigate this issue. However, the department said that the investigation has been delayed; as new laws that regulated departments are being put into practice.


Related article:
Toxic pesticides used by vegetable farmers

Source: SGGP

New tourist boats used in Phong Nha Ke Bang

In Uncategorized on December 16, 2010 at 9:38 am




New tourist boats used in Phong Nha Ke Bang


QĐND – Monday, December 13, 2010, 21:11 (GMT+7)

The Phong Nha Ke Bang National Park in the central province of Quang Binh has put into operation two new kinds of boats to provide tourist services for tourists.


The new boats, part of a project to develop tourism in the sub-Delta River region, will help protect the environment and provide safety for tourists on a tourism route on the Son River.


According to Mr. Le The Luc, the project’s Director, the new boats will help local people develop and protect heritages well.


In the near future, more new boats will be provided to local people to replace old boats, which were not suitable for carrying tourists.


Source: TT


Translated by Duy Minh


Source: QDND

Stem cells used to treat killer skin disease

In Uncategorized on August 12, 2010 at 11:22 am

Research is conducted on stem cells. AFP file

WASHINGTON (AFP) – In two groundbreaking studies, doctors have used stem cells from bone marrow to help heal children with a killer skin disease, and to repair injured lungs.


Researchers led by University of Minnesota doctors John Wagner and Jakub Tolar used bone marrow stem cells to treat children with a rare genetic skin disorder called recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa (RDEB).


The study was the first to show that bone marrow stem cells can be used to treat diseases affecting the skin and upper gastrointestinal tract, and alter the course of epidermolysis bullosa (EB), which causes skin to blister and scrape off with the slightest rub or bump — and for which there is no cure.


EB can also affect the lining of the mouth and esophagus, as well as the skin, and makes activities that many children take for granted, such as eating, painful.


Seven children were enrolled in the trial which ran from 2007 to 2009. One child died before doctors could transplant healthy bone marrow stem cells, and another died six months after the transplant.


But the remaining five were all better, Tolar told AFP.


“Their skin is better, they are more active, they use fewer bandages, they have donor cells in their skin and we have been able to show that they produce the all-important collagen 7 in their skin,” he said.


Collagen 7, a protein that keeps layers of skin “glued” to each other and to the body, is missing in EB sufferers.


Although the children still have residual wounds on their skin, which means they have not been cured of their chronic illness, Tolar said the treatment had given them a new lease on life.


“They’re eating, moving around, one of them bought a trampoline, they eat chips. These things were unheard of before the transplant,” he said.


Since 2007, Wagner and Tolar have used transplanted bone marrow containing healing stem cells to treat 12 children with the most aggressive forms of epidermolysis bullosa.


All of the children have responded to the therapy, to varying degrees, the study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, said.


In a separate study, reported in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, researchers at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) used bone marrow stem cells to treat acute lung injury, one of the most common causes of respiratory failure in hospital intensive care units.


A team led by Michael Matthay and Jae Lee at the Cardiovascular Research Institute of UCSF re-created unhealthy lung conditions in the lab by culturing human alveolar cells and then chemically causing inflammation.


They then added bone marrow stem cells to the mix and observed how things changed.


“What happens in lung injury is that the membrane becomes very porous, fluid comes into the lung and pulmonary edema occurs, which leads to a worse outcome,” Lee told AFP.


“We found that if you add stem cells, there’s a restoration of the permeability, meaning stem cells were protective — they prevented permeability-increase in the epithelium,” he said.


The authors of the UCSF study say the findings are the first to demonstrate how certain marrow bone stem cells restore the border of the lungs. They hope to begin phase II clinical trials to prove the therapy is viable for preventing respiratory failure in critically ill patients.


Both of the studies used adult stem cells, not embryonic stem cells which have stirred controversy among the religious right in the United States and the Vatican.


The Obama administration last year lifted a ban on the use of embryonic stem cells in scientific research that had been imposed by the administration of George W. Bush.


Embryonic stem cell research is controversial because human embryos are destroyed in order to obtain the cells capable of developing into almost every tissue of the body.


But it also holds great promise for treating cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and other diseases and even growing organs and tissues for transplants.

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Source: SGGP

Carbon trading used as money-laundering front: experts

In Uncategorized on July 16, 2010 at 8:47 am

SINGAPORE, July 16, 2010 (AFP) – Organised crime gangs are using carbon emissions trading schemes as fronts for money-laundering, experts warned Friday.


The experts who attended a meeting of the Asia Pacific Money Laundering Group (APG) said crime syndicates are resorting to new methods to hide their illegal proceeds.


One “issue that we’ve looked at closely is money laundering associated with carbon emissions trading schemes”, APG executive secretary Gordon Hook told a news conference after the five-day meeting.


Hook did not elaborate on how crime syndicates were using carbon emissions trading schemes to launder money.


Emissions trading schemes place a limit on the amount of greenhouse gas pollution which companies can produce, forcing heavy polluters to buy credits from companies that pollute less — thereby creating financial incentives to fight global warming.


John Harrison, a security analyst at Singapore’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, told AFP that the carbon emissions trading market is relatively new and crime gangs are taking advantage of loopholes in regulation. “They will use new markets to try and launder their money, and particularly if these new markets are not well regulated yet,” he said. “It’s not surprising.”


APG is an international organisation that is closely affiliated with the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF).


Hook said the region’s money-laundering activities had wider, international connections.


“More and more money laundering and terrorist financing we are seeing are in reality transnational crimes so the web of international connections and international cooperation is extremely important,” he said.


APG co-chairman Tony Negus, who is also the commissioner of the Australian Federal Police, said the ease of movement and communications have made the fight against organised crime more difficult.


“These days syndicates move across jurisdictions with ease and across the world with ease with increased travel and increased electronic transfers,” he said.

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Source: SGGP

Hyundai Vinashin discharges used nix into warehouse…?

In Uncategorized on July 5, 2010 at 12:10 pm

The Department of Natural Resources and Environment of central Khanh Hoa Province has told Sai Gon Giai Phong that Hyundai Vinashin Shipyard Co. (HVS) has collected and transported used nix, a toxic waste, to a warehouse for treatment, instead of dumping it into the environment as had been reported.

A corner of Ninh Hoa District in the central province of Khanh Hoa, where Hyundai Vinashin Shipyard Co. dumps toxic waste

The department provided feedback after SGGP had reported that HVS was continuously discharging the waste into a residential area in Ninh Hoa District.
 
To clear space for construction of a shipbuilding yard, HVS has collected used nix kept in the HVS factory from 2008 and transported it to a nix warehouse of the Hanoi Mineral Metallurgy Joint-Stock Company, the department said.
 
However, in reality, a convoy of trucks was seen June 25 transporting used nix from the HVS factory to a nix dumping ground in My A Hamlet, in Ninh Hoa District’s Ninh Thuy Commune, which is three kilometers from the factory.
 
The new waste was unloaded over nearly one million tons of the previously deposited waste, which remains untreated.
 
The department called the dumping ground “a warehouse of the Hanoi Mineral Metallurgy JS Co.”
 
This means that HVS has not polluted; rather, the Hanoi Mineral Metallurgy JS Co. is responsible for the environmental damage caused by nix.


HVS, a joint venture between South Korea’s Hyundai Group and the Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Corporation, was found dumping large amounts of dangerous, untreated nix waste into the environment in 2007.  


In 2008, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment asked HVS to stop using nix, a type of copper slag used in ship repair until the company implemented measures to treat used nix.
The company then promised to construct a nix treatment plant in Ninh Hoa District.


While the plant invested by the Hanoi Mineral Metallurgy JS Co. will not begin operation until next year, HVS has continued to dump the waste into the environment. Thus, local residents are forced to live amid the pollution.

Source: SGGP

Over 155,000 Rotarix doses used in Vietnam

In Uncategorized on March 28, 2010 at 2:37 pm




Over 155,000 Rotarix doses used in Vietnam


QĐND – Sunday, March 28, 2010, 21:6 (GMT+7)

More than 155,000 doses of the diarrhea vaccine Rotarix, now known to contain a pig virus, have been used in Vietnam since 2007, when it was approved for use in the country.


Following the recent announcement by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that Rotarix contains the pig virus PCV-1, Vietnam temporarily halted using the vaccine from March 27.


The country has also asked Rotarix-maker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in Vietnam to coordinate with local importers and distributors to alert all health clinics about the directive and not to order further batches.


GSK announced the discovery of the pig virus in the oral vaccine, used to fight rotavirus in children, to the Drug Administration of Vietnam (DAV) on March 24.


Dr. Nguyen Thi Tuong Vi, GSK representative in Vietnam, said March 27 that GSK had agreed to cooperate fully with the DAV in temporarily stopping the administration of the vaccine.


GSK has already informed importers and distributors and checked the current volume of Rotarix. It will report to the DAV by March 31, she added.


Dr. Vi said GSK will not stop producing and distributing the vaccine because PCV-1 does not multiply in humans and is not known to cause rotavirus-related illness in people.


Data from clinical research shows that the vaccine is safe, she added.


However, many parents whose children have taken Rotarix are now very anxious and have asked for advice from doctors.


According to the National Institute for Control of Vaccine and Biological Products, there is no cause for public alarm as all vaccines must pass rigorous safety testing before being put into use.


The DAV has asked GSK to provide documents proving the vaccine’s safety. It has also requested information on how the US FDA and other affected countries are dealing with the problem.


An independent US academic research team first detected DNA from porcine circovirus 1 (PCV-1) in Rotarix, and follow-up tests by GSK and FDA scientists confirmed the team’s findings.


The tests also showed that viral components had been present since the early stages of the vaccine’s development, including during clinical studies.


Source: VietNamNet/SGGP


 


Source: QDND

Over 155,000 Rotarix doses used in Vietnam

In Uncategorized on March 28, 2010 at 8:32 am

More than 155,000 doses of the diarrhea vaccine Rotarix, now known to contain a pig virus, have been used in Vietnam since 2007, when it was approved for use in the country. 

A child receives an inoculation in Vietnam (Photo: SGGP)

Following the recent announcement by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that Rotarix contains the pig virus PCV-1, Vietnam temporarily halted using the vaccine from March 27.
 
The country has also asked Rotarix-maker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in Vietnam to coordinate with local importers and distributors to alert all health clinics about the directive and not to order further batches.

GSK announced the discovery of the pig virus in the oral vaccine, used to fight rotavirus in children, to the Drug Administration of Vietnam (DAV) on March 24.
 
Dr. Nguyen Thi Tuong Vi, GSK representative in Vietnam, said March 27 that GSK had agreed to cooperate fully with the DAV in temporarily stopping the administration of the vaccine.
 
GSK has already informed importers and distributors and checked the current volume of Rotarix. It will report to the DAV by March 31, she added.
 
Dr. Vi said GSK will not stop producing and distributing the vaccine because PCV-1 does not multiply in humans and is not known to cause rotavirus-related illness in people.
 
Data from clinical research shows that the vaccine is safe,  she added.
 
However, many parents whose children have taken Rotarix are now very anxious and have asked for advice from doctors.
 
According to the National Institute for Control of Vaccine and Biological Products, there is no cause for public alarm as all vaccines must pass rigorous safety testing before being put into use.
 
The DAV has asked GSK to provide documents proving the vaccine’s safety. It has also requested information on how the US FDA and other affected countries are dealing with the problem.
 
An independent US academic research team first detected DNA from porcine circovirus 1 (PCV-1) in Rotarix, and follow-up tests by GSK and FDA scientists confirmed the team’s findings.


The tests also showed that viral components had been present since the early stages of the vaccine’s development, including during clinical studies.


Related article:
Vietnam halts use of diarrhea vaccine Rotarix

Source: SGGP

Sodium sulfate used in making tapioca pearls

In Vietnam Health on September 9, 2009 at 2:50 am

Tapioca pearls, a substance used to make pearl milk tea, a popular drink among young people in Vietnam, was discovered to contain sodium sulfate, widely used in the field of industrial bleaching, said health inspectors on September 1.








Long Phu Co. produces tapioca pearls on the floor ( Photo: Tuoi tre)

Following China’s discovery that some tapioca tea, also known as bubble milk tea, contained polymer plastic, health inspectors from Ho Chi Minh City’d Department of Health took samples for tests from some tea shops along Nguyen Van Cu Streets, and from manufacturers Hong Tuong in District Tan Binh, Duyen An shop in Binh Tay market.


Health officials did not however find polymer plastic but most tea did fail to meet food hygiene and safety. Inspectors ordered shops to stop selling tea and destroy unhygienic tapioca pearls.


Previously, health inspectors had paid a visit to Long Phuc Co. in Trinh Dinh Trong Street, Tan Phu Distrivt. The facility was found to have poor hygiene conditions.


The manager, Luu Toan Lap, said his factory used a chemical to bleach tapioca pearls and preserve them for a long time. A ton of tapioca pearls was sold to shops, said Mr. Lap.

Related articles:
Health warnings over tapioca tea

Tea additive contains acids, say Hanoi health officials


Source: SGGP