Please read and share this important technical report (below the action item and Dr. Rima’s comments) showing that nano silver CANNOT become a threat to aquatic life or soil life. The EPA’s assault is a transparent attempt to shore up the ability of Big Pharma to destroy smaller competitors using government regulatory agencies and “Poison Press” as their weapons.
George J. Maass, Ph.D. (Colloidal Science Laboratories)
Silver is an effective germ fighter and silver nanoparticles are widely recognized
as being especially effective because of their enormously high surface area. Due to the
large number of manufacturers using silver nanoparticles in their products, some concern
has arisen about the effects on the environment when these products are disposed of or
washed. This report will demonstrate that silver nanoparticles do not remain â€œnanosizeâ€
when they come in contact with normal environmental samples, such as soil and water,
but they agglomerate to form much larger, much less biologically effective, silver
particles which are non-toxic, non-ionic and have no history of being harmful to the
environment or aquatic life. Furthermore, there is no possibility that silver nanoparticles
can ever form silver ions, except in the presence of strong oxidizing substances.
Recently, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a statement that
they were planning to regulate companies that produce nanoparticles for use as anti-
microbials. This gives rise to the question: why are the dietary supplement and
nanoparticle industries being targeted at this time and what is the rational for new
regulation of an industry which has previously had no reported harmful effects to
humanity or the environment?
The EPA knows that silver nanoparticles are effective as antimicrobials. The
reason given by the EPA for the current interest is that silver nanoparticles, or products
that claim to be silver nanoparticles, are now being produced by a number of
manufacturers, and the EPA is concerned that, when these particles are disposed of, there
might be an appreciable amount of silver nanoparticles suddenly appearing in the
environment. The proposed concern is due to the fact that the silver nanoparticles are so
small that their surface area per unit weight is very large, therefore, for a given weight of
product, the biological effectiveness, which is proportional to surface area, is far beyond
that which would be expected. This much is true and it is part of the reason that silver
nanoparticles are so attractive in biological applications. The EPA is not questioning the
fact that silver nanoparticles are effective in killing harmful bacteria, but that, because of
the high surface area/weight effectiveness parameter, by disposing these particles into
sewers or waterways, might there be harmful effects to the environment by eliminating
the bacteria which are useful in normal waste degradation?
There are several other areas which, as recent articles have indicated, show
misunderstandings about silver and its nanoparticles. At Arizona State University,
Westerhoff and Benn (1) have reported â€œfindingsâ€ which have never been observed
during the last 10 years at Colloidal Science Laboratories (CSL). For example, they claim
that nanosilver particles produce ionic silver when exposed to moisture. This is NOT
true! This is tantamount to saying that silver metal is water soluble. At CSL, various
forms of silver, ranging from solid silver metal to fine silver powder to colloidal
nanoparticles, have been exposed to water for long periods of time with agitation. No
increase in conductivity or silver ion concentration has ever been observed when silver
metal in any form is treated with water. Silver metal requires chemical treatment with
nitric acid or Aqua Regia to make silver ions. Westerhoff and Benn were working with
commercially prepared socks which are prepared by treating the socks with solutions of
silver in questionable form. There may have been some actual colloidal silver in the
treatment solutions, but there most certainly were soluble silver compounds present, and,
once the socks are rinsed, these are the substances which put silver ions back into the
Some people also claim that only silver ions have antimicrobial properties. This
is another misconception. Colloidal silver is a wonderful antimicrobial by itself, which is
a good thing, because silver ions are very reactive with chloride ion to form insoluble,
and biologically inert, silver chloride. This happens in the bloodstream and in nature
wherever halogen anions are present.
As this report will show, the high biological effectiveness of colloidal silver does
not persist in nature because the nanoparticles agglomerate as soon as they come in
contact with the environment, specifically soil and water. Westerhoff and Benn admit that
silver particles â€œclumpâ€ together in the fabric and in the wash water. That is precisely the
point to be considered for environmental safety. How much â€œclumpingâ€ does it take so
that the particles are no longer considered to be â€œnanoâ€, but much larger, therefore
eliminating the continuing effect of high biological activity? These researchers, and
others, are very quick to make the jump from colloidal nanoparticles, in socks for
example, to ionic silver and its toxic effect, especially in zebra fish, and they speak as if
the ions came from the colloidal nanoparticles. It is necessary to be very clear about this.
If the researchers are finding silver ions in the wash water or anywhere else, then the
silver ions were present in the original material. This cannot be stated too strongly.
Unless people have taken to washing their socks in nitric acid, the conversion of
colloidal silver nanoparticles to silver ions is not possible.
The work at hand will examine four different environmental conditions which
change the morphology and stability of silver colloids:
1. The effect of drainage of silver colloids through several soil samples.
2. The effect of interaction of silver colloids with different water
3. The effect of exposure of silver colloids to sunlight.
4. The change in level of silver colloids with regard to biological activity.
At the outset, the first two questions to be addressed were what environmental
samples should be used and to what concentration of colloidal silver should these
samples be exposed. Since this is a first attempt at this kind of information, it was
decided to limit the environmental samples to the following:
1. Sand, taken from the New Jersey shore
2. Dirt, taken from central New Jersey,
3. Dirt, taken from Northern Pennsylvania
4. Water, local tap water from Westampton, NJ
5. Water, sea water, taken from the New Jersey shore
6. Water, taken from a northern Pennsylvania well
The soil samples represent some of the most common types found on the Eastern
Coast of the United States. The sand is essentially an Entisol, which is a type of soil that
is not subject to a great deal of chemical change and is common to areas where deposition
and removal occur at regular intervals. The New Jersey soil is primarily an Ultisol,
which contains clay, quartz, kaolinite and various iron oxides. The Pennsylvania soil is
most likely a mixture of Alfisols and Inceptisols which are clays that are productive for
growing most crops and are common to many areas. (3)
The water samples are Sea water, rich in many salts, NJ tap water, which has been
through routine purification, and Pennsylvania well water, which most likely contains
carbonates and nitrates. Therefore, the selection of samples should be sufficient to
establish the effect of the environment on nanoparticles for this initial study.
Next, in looking at the quantitative amount of colloidal silver to be used, it was
decided that the initial test case should provide information with regard to an
overabundance of nanoparticles being released to the environment, rather than just a trace
amount. If the environment is not substantially altered by the overabundance, surely it
will not be influenced by smaller amounts.
Preliminary work indicated that, at concentrations of up to 6 ppm, and probably
higher, based on the weight of soil samples, no nanoparticles would survive. Therefore, a
more reasonable amount, but still an enormously high concentration for a natural
occurrence, was selected.
Colloidal silver samples at our disposal were of the dietary supplement type and
average at least 20 ppm of silver. Most soil samples require 0.5 to 0.75 their weight in
water to start draining. It was decided that the colloidal silver would be diluted 10 to 1
and then applied to each soil sample. This would make each sample contain a minimum
of 2 ppm of silver nanoparticles, based on the weight of the soil. This would correspond
roughly to dumping 27 liters of 20 ppm colloidal silver onto one ton of dirt. Since most
colloidal silver customers are concerned with teaspoon and tablespoon quantities, it
should be safe to say that this experiment covers something well above the worst case
In each experimental case, the selected sample of colloidal silver was mixed with
the environmental sample and the change in particle size and zeta potential recorded after
a specified time. The instrument used for this work was the Malvern Zetasizer, Model
Nano ZS. Since the samples which were in contact with soil contained very large
macroparticles and rocks, the samples all required vacuum filtration through grade 601
Ahlstrom filter paper to eliminate the particles which are 3 to 4 orders of magnitude
greater than the ones of interest in this study. This filtration has no effect on
For the trials in which the environmental samples were water, the colloidal silver
was diluted 10 to 1 in the water in question.
Table 2 shows that, after only 15 minutes of contact with the soil samples, a
decrease in zeta potential, and the smallest particles have increased to the 3 to 8 nm
range, and they still represent 80 to 90% of the total.
Table 3 indicates that, after a full 7 days of contact with the soil, but kept away
from sunlight, the nanoparticles have increased 3 to 8 times in size.
In Table 4, these results are more dramatic, since the samples were all exposed to
the sunlight for the 7 days, with the increases in size being 7 to 20 fold, and the smallest
particles now representing only 30 to 40 % of the total.
For the data in Table 5, the colloidal silver was left in contact with the
environmental water sample for 21 days in sunlight. As can be seen from the table, the
particle sizes have significantly increased (3 orders of magnitude), with a corresponding
drop in the zeta potential.
In Table 6, the samples were left in contact with the water samples instead of the
soil samples for 7 days in the sunlight. The results of these tests show that each water
sample also decreased the zeta potential and increased the particle size.
PROPERTIES OF COLLOIDAL SILVER USED IN TESTING
nm Zeta Pot., mV Total Ag, ppm Ionic Ag, ppm
1.74 -31.7 21.4 9.60
TABLE 1 – DEIONIZED WATER
Particles, nm Zeta Pot., mV Total Ag, ppm Ionic Ag, ppm
Sand None found -20.2 0.00 0.00
NJ Soil None found -1.5 0.00 0.00
PA Soil None found -31.3 0.00 0.00
TABLE 2 â€“ COLLOIDAL SILVER â€“ 15 MIN. CONTACT â€“ 7 DAYS LATER
Particles, nm Zeta Pot., mV Total Ag, ppm Ionic Ag, ppm
Sand 3.53 -20.6 1.14 0.00
NJ Soil 4.35 -22.2 1.57 0.20
PA Soil 8.30 -21.7 1.05 0.20
In a previous paper by F. Key and G. Maass (4), the nature of a colloid was
described as being a suspension of very small particles which are stabilized by having a
diffuse double layer of solution ions around them. The charge acquired by these particles
gives rise to a potential difference (i.e., mutual repulsion) between them that keeps them
separate and stabilizes the colloid. This potential difference is called the Zeta Potential,
and has been described in countless books on electrolytic effects in solutions. When the
colloid is composed of nanoparticles, the task of preventing the agglomeration is not an
As the previous paper pointed out, if the zeta potential is more negative than
-30 mV, then the mutual repulsion between particles is sufficient to keep them separate
and stabilize the colloid. When the zeta potential is between -15 mV and 0 mV, however,
the particles agglomerate and flocculation or precipitation occurs.
In a 1996 report by the Department of the Interior by M. Elimelech and A. E.
Childress (5), it was pointed out that for world average fresh water rivers, the
concentration of common anions and cations across all normal pH ranges is sufficient to
change the zeta potential range from about -10 mV to +5 mV, making agglomeration of
nanoparticles occur. In sea water, the agglomeration would be even more pronounced.
1. This report has demonstrated that silver nanoparticles will grow to
biologically far less active â€œclumpsâ€ even if one dumps 27 liters of 20
ppm colloidal silver on each ton of soil. In practice, this is an
enormously high number which could not be expected to be reached
2. In spite of the number of manufacturers producing silver nanoparticles
or claiming to be silver nanoparticles, because of the low concentrations
in which these products are sold, the total amount which could be
released in any part of the environment would still be expected to be
3. As shown by all the experiments above, nanoparticles do not last as
nanoparticles in nature for very long, but grow to harmless clumps of
4. Silver nanoparticles are not water soluble, and therefore, silver colloids
will not release silver ions into the environment.
Once agglomeration of the silver nanoparticles occurs, the result is simply
silver metal; a harmless metal which has existed in nature from the beginning of our
planet. Most people would not object to finding silver metal on their property.
1. Environ. Sci. & Technol. 2008, 42, p 7025-7026
2. Tony M. Isaacs, www.americanchronicle.com/articles49272 , May 14, 2008
3. Dept. of Agriculture, Handbook 296, 2006
4. F. Key and G. Maass, â€œIons, Atoms and Charged Particlesâ€, available at
5. Zeta Potential of RO Membranes by M. Elimelech and A. E. Childress, contract
There are two articles which follow this introduction which have great bearing on your health and, eventually, your ability survive.
Agricultural chemicals have been known since their inception to pose significant threats to human, animal and environmental health. They are, in fact, only approved for use on the food supply of people and animals because, in my opinion, of the enormous wealth which chemical companies, which are, in essence, a branch of the pharmaceutical industry, have have available to throw at compliant regulators and legislators, plus deceptive and misleading advertising bulwarked by corporate junk science.
Agricultural chemicals are not, however, limited to herbicides, fungicides, pesticides and fertilizers. Other chemicals quality for that designation, too. For many years, the US has permitted the spraying of fluoride and mercury on crops after harvest to prevent mold growth during storage despite the well characterized dangers of those substances.
Now, another toxin, also well known for its adverse effect on the brain, the nervous system, the endocrine system, perception, mood and vascular integrety has been approved by the supposed guardians of our health, the FDA, EPA and USDA for direct application, without any upper limit, on our foods.
Read this article and ask yourself whether you ever want to eat non organic food again. Then ask yourself why regulators are permitting known toxins in our food.
And then click on this link (http://drrimatruthreports.com/index.php?page_id=189) to make a donation to the Natural Solutions Foundation, a totally donation-supported Non governmental organization (NGO) devoted to your right to make your own choices in your health. Among the freedoms that we believe belong to you and that we are fighting for on your behalf, and ours, is the right to know what your food has been sprayed with, genetically modified with, contaminated with or irradiated with. In short, if food is contaminated you have a right to know it.
And you have another right, too, as I see it.
You have a right to be protected by the regulators from the self-interested companies that do not care at all about the damage their chemicals and processes bring to you and yours. That is, after all, what we believe regulatory agencies are supposed to do. But the sad truth is that we need to be protected FROM the regulatory agencies.
That’s one of the things that Natural Solutions Foundation does, in fact. And, of course, we need your help. Click here (http://drrimatruthreports.com/index.php?page_id=189) to become a supporting sponsor with a tax deductible recurring donation. And visit the Natural Solutions Foundation home page, www.HealthFreedomUSA.org, to sign up for our free, secure Health Freedom eAlerts.
Yours in health and freedom,
Rima E. Laibow, MD
MSG is being sprayed right on fruits, nuts, seeds, grains, and vegetables as they grow —
even those used in baby food
In the 1970s, reluctant food processors “voluntarily” took processed free glutamic acid (MSG) out of baby food. Today it’s back, in fertilizers called “Omega Protein Refined/Hydrolyzed Fish Emulsion” and “Steam Hydrolyzed Feather Meal,” both of which contain hydrolyzed proteins; and in a product called AuxiGro WP Plant Metabolic Primer (AuxiGro) produced by Emerald BioAgriculture (formerly Auxein Corporation), which contains both hydrolyzed protein(s) and “monosodium glutamate.” AuxiGro is being sprayed on some of the vegetables we and our children will eat, into the air we and our children must breath, and onto the ground from which it can move into drinking water. Head lettuce, leaf lettuce, tomatoes, potatoes, and peanuts were among the first crops targeted. On September 12, 2000, the Auxein Corporation Web site gave the following information:
Crops registered include: Celery; Fresh Market Cucumbers; Edible Navy and Pinto Beans; Grapes; Bulb Onions; Bell, Green and Jalapeno Peppers; Iceberg Head Lettuce; Romaine and Butter Leaf Lettuce; Peanuts; Potatoes; Snap Beans; Strawberries; Processing Tomatoes; Fresh Tomatoes; and Watermelons.
Today, there is no crop that we know of that has not been approved for treatment with MSG by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Even in California — the only state where there are any restrictions on the use of AuxiGro — AuxiGro has been approved for use on a number of crops, and Emerald BioAgriculture continues to push for more. Field tests in California have been — and may continue to be — conducted on a variety of crops, and those AuxiGro treated crops may be sold in the open market without revealing that they have been treated. We can’t tell you which crops those are because the CDPR has refused to send records of test trials (which are public information) to the Truth in Labeling Campaign.
As of June 13, 2002, AuxiGro was registered for use in California on tomatoes, almonds, apricots, cherries, plums, nectarines, peaches, prunes, grapes (including grapes to be used in wine), and onions. At that time, the California Department of Pesticide Regulation said they were not aware of any testing of AuxiGro for use on other crops. They also said that they did not have any proposals presently in house to register additional crops for AuxiGro. It would appear, however, that what the CDPR said was not true, for the CDPR subsequently announced that Emerald BioAgriculture had applied for permission to use AuxiGro on tomatoes (new use), and on melons (new crop) — and, to the best of our knowledge, approval is always preceded by field testing.
On July 7, 2004, Emerald BioAgriculture requested approval of use of AuxiGro as a desiccant, disinfectant, fertilizer, fungicide, growth regulator – for increased yield and prevention of powdery mildew in various crops such as almonds, grapes, and melons. They also asked to add cole crops (including broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, collards, turnips, rutabaga, mustard, watercress, and kohlrabi) to the list of crops approved for AuxiGro use.
Approval for use on organic crops–in all states–has been requested.
What’s wrong with using glutamic acid, an amino acid found in protein, as a spray on crops?
– In protein, amino acids are found in balanced combinations. Use of free glutamic acid as a spray on crops throws the amino acid balance out of kilter.
– It’s not the glutamic acid found in protein that is being sprayed on crops, it’s a synthetic product. The spray being used most widely is called AuxiGro. The “free glutamic acid” or so called “L-glutamic acid” component being used by its manufacturer, Emerald BioAgriculture, contains L-glutamic acid, an amino acid found in protein; but it also contains D-glutamic acid, pyroglutamic acid, and other chemicals referred to in the industry as “contaminants.” The free glutamic acid used in AuxiGro is processed free glutamic acid. It is manufactured — in chemical plants — where certain selected genetically engineered bacteria — feeding on a liquid nutrient medium — excrete the free glutamic acid they synthesize outside of their cell membrane into the liquid medium in which they are grown. In contrast, the free glutamic acid found in protein, and the free glutamic acid involved in normal human body function, are unprocessed. free glutamic acid, and contain no contaminants.
– No one knows what the long term effects of spraying processed free glutamic acid on crops will be.
– That the processed free glutamic acid (MSG) will be absorbed into the body of the plant and into the fruit, nuts, seeds, or vegetable it produces seems undeniable. If it were not, the plant would not be stimulated to grow. Neither Emerald BioAgriculture or the EPA will address this issue.
– That there will be residue left on crops has not been disputed by Emerald BioAgriculture. But no study of either the amount of that residue, or the least amount of processed free glutamic acid needed to cause a reaction in an MSG-sensitive person, has ever been done. “It should wash off” doesn’t mean it will wash off. “It seems unlikely that such a small amount would cause a reactions” doesn’t mean that a small amount will not cause a reaction or have long term health effects.
– Free glutamic acid is known to be toxic to the nervous system. But the neurotoxic effects that processed free glutamic acid will have on animals that consume the plants on which it is sprayed – effects over and above any effects caused by external glutamic acid residue – have never been evaluated. Neither are there data on the effects that spraying processed free glutamic acid will have on drinking water.
– Consider, also, that children are most at risk from the effects of processed free glutamic acid. Their undeveloped blood-brain barriers leave them most at risk from exposure to processed free glutamic acid. It has been repeatedly demonstrated that infant animals fed processed free glutamic acid when young develop neuroendocrine problems such as gross obesity, stunted growth, and reproductive disorders later in life, and that they also develop learning disabilities. Emerald BioAgriculture did not address that particular safety issue in its application to the EPA.
– No one knows how little glutamic acid is needed to kill a single brain cell or to trigger an adverse reaction.
– Free glutamic acid is a neurotransmitter. It causes nerves to fire, carrying nerve impulses throughout the nervous system.
– Free glutamic acid is a neurotoxin. Under certain circumstances, free glutamic acid will cause nerves to fire repeatedly, until they die.
– Processed free glutamic acid kills brain cells. The free glutamic acid ingested by laboratory animals that caused brain lesions and neuroendocrine disorders was very often given in the form of the food ingredient “monosodium glutamate.” “Monosodium glutamate” is the name of a particular food additive. Processed free glutamic acid is the reactive component in “monosodium glutamate,” just as processed free glutamic acid is a reactive component in AuxiGro.
The glutamate industry research done in the 1970s that was submitted to the EPA by the Auxein Corporation, that pretended to find that processed free glutamic acid is “safe,” has been long refuted by independent scientists. Indeed, at the present time, neuroscientists attempting to develop drugs to block the toxic effects of free glutamic acid are using processed free glutamic acid to selectively kill certain kinds of brain cells.
– Processed free glutamic acid causes neuroendocrine disorders in maturing animals that ingest processed free glutamic acid early in life.
– Processed free glutamic acid causes learning disorders in maturing animals that ingest processed free glutamic acid early in life.
– Processed free glutamic acid crosses the placental barrier and causes learning disabilities in animal offspring of dams that ingest it.
– Processed free glutamic acid has access to the brain through the blood-brain barrier, which is not impervious to the unregulated flow of processed free glutamic acid. The blood-brain barrier is immature at birth and may continue to develop up to puberty. In certain areas called the circumventricular organs, the blood barrier is never impervious to the unregulated flow of free glutamic acid. In addition, the blood-brain barrier is easily damaged by such events as high fever, a blow to the head, drug use, stroke, ingestion of processed free glutamic acid, and the normal process of aging.
– The National Institutes of Health recognize glutamic acid as being associated with addiction, stroke, epilepsy, degenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and ALS, brain trauma, neuropathic pain, schizophrenia, anxiety, and depression.
– For years, free glutamic acid has been produced and used in food additives with names such as monosodium glutamate, sodium caseinate, and hydrolyzed soy protein. In some people, the processed free glutamic acid in food additives causes adverse reactions that include migraine headache, asthma, arrhythmia, tachycardia, nausea and vomiting, depression, and disorientation. The processed free glutamic acid in prescription and non-prescription drugs, food supplements, and cosmetics can also cause adverse reactions.
There are badly flawed industry-sponsored studies that have pretended to find that processed free glutamic acid does not cause adverse reactions. Inappropriate procedures used by the glutamate industry have included limiting subjects to people virtually guaranteed not to be sensitive to processed free glutamic acid, and/or using processed free glutamic acid or other similarly reactive substances in placebos as well as in test material. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has based its claim that processed free glutamic acid causes only mild and transitory reactions on those badly flawed industry-sponsored studies.
– Even the EPA admits that the food additive called “monosodium glutamate” causes adverse reactions.
– Even the FDA admits that the food additive “monosodium glutamate” contains processed free glutamic acid.
<>– Even the FDA admits that many consumers refer to all free glutamic acid as “MSG.”
The EPA’s approvals of use of MSG in agriculture are simple, straightforward, and in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act
In reviewing the application of Auxein Corporation (now Emerald BioAgriculture) for use of processed free glutamic acid in a spray to be applied to crops as they grow, the EPA failed to conform to the requirements of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, which require, in part, that the EPA review any proposed action for validity, completeness, reliability, and relationship to human risk. The EPA also ignored Executive Order 13045 which requires government agencies to consider available information concerning the variability of the sensitivities of major identifiable subgroups of consumers, including infants and children. For example, Auxein Corporation sent the EPA 14 industry-sponsored toxicological studies from the literature, all done in the 1970’s, but failed to mention hundreds of studies in the literature that refuted those 14 studies. Auxein Corporation even failed to send the EPA independent studies that appeared in the same book(s) as the industry-sponsored studies sent to the EPA. For example, although processed free glutamic acid causes brain lesions and neuroendocrine disorders in infant animals, this special hazard faced by infants was ignored by Auxein Corporation. It would appear that Auxein Corporation restricted its consideration of “available information” to information made available by the glutamate industry; and the EPA, even after having been sent abstracts from other “available information,” has not challenged the Auxein Corporation applications. A more complete discussion of the shortcomings of the EPA approvals granted to Auxein Corporation has been submitted to the EPA.
Questions about the safety of spraying processed free glutamic acid on plants and into the environment have been raised by the Truth in Labeling Campaign and by individual consumers. The EPA has refused to address those concerns. The EPA, and, in particular, EPA spokesperson Dr. Janet Andersen, has failed to respond to allegations that in approving the spraying of processed free glutamic acid, the EPA failed to consider the reliability, validity, and completeness of the Auxein Corporation application or comply with Executive Order 13045 entitled Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks, except to say that the EPA had complied with executive order 13045. Moreover, while responding to letters that asked direct questions of the EPA, Andersen failed to respond to most, if not all, of the direct questions contained in those letters.
AuxiGro, the first MSG-laced plant “growth enhancer” to hit the market, has been approved for spraying on every crop we know of, with no restrictions on the amount of processed free glutamic acid (MSG) that may remain in and/or on crops when brought to market. Even before consumers had an inkling that crops were being sprayed, the Truth in Labeling Campaign received reports that MSG-sensitive consumers had gotten sick from head lettuce and potatoes.
Federal Register notices chronicling the application and approval of processed free glutamic acid are available on the Web via GPO Access, the Federal Register, through: http://www.gpoaccess.gov/fr/index.html. Application for approval of use of AuxiGro was made to the EPA in 1997. Testing of the product was also approved in that year, and many of the test crops sprayed with AuxiGro were brought to market without notifying consumers. Glutamic acid was granted an exemption from establishment of a tolerance limit in January, 1998. AuxiGro was also approved for use on a number of crops in January, 1998, and approved for use on other crops later. No announcement of these approvals was made in the Federal Register.
Due to a technical glitch in the system, the glutes came to need one more approval to make their California registrations work. The glutes were asking for AuxiGro to be approved for use as a fungicide in California, but the EPA had only approved AuxiGro for use as a pesticide produce or plant growth enhancer. And when application was made for this addition to their approvals, the application was brought to our attention; and the Truth in Labeling Campaign filed a formal protest to this approval of AuxiGro. The Formal Objection of the Truth in Labeling Campaign was filed on August 16, 2001 with the EPA.
By law, formal objections filed in a timely manner must be responded to within six months. Also, by law (we were told) even though the Final Rule had not been promulgated, this additional use of AuxiGro would be considered approved unless and until the EPA determined that it should be otherwise. In July, 2004, we received a conference call from Dr. Andersen and a number of other EPA players, including an EPA lawyer — a “courtesy call” telling us that our objections had been discounted and that the Final Rule allowing use of AuxiGro as a fungicide would be published shortly in the Federal Register.
What’s wrong at the EPA?
Neither the EPA nor Janet Andersen, Ph.D., director of the Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division (BPPD), are stupid. Rather, all evidence would appear to suggest that the EPA, which is charged with protecting the health of Americans, says it is protecting the health of Americans, when in fact the EPA acts to protect the bottom line of big business. Don’t think for a moment that MSG is the only toxin unleashed on the American public by the EPA. Let the words “methyl parathion” and “DDT” jog your memory.
The EPA, in granting the chemical referred to as “L-glutamic acid” an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance for residues of “L-glutamic acid” on all food commodities when applied/used in accordance with good agricultural practices (thereby allowing unrestricted amounts of processed free glutamic acid (MSG) residue to remain in and on any and all food crops that come under the EPA’s jurisdiction) violated Section 408(c)(2)(A)(i), Section 408(c)(2)(ii), Section 408(c)(2)(B), and Section 408(b)(2)(D) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.
Neither “L-Glutamic Acid and Gamma Aminobutyric Acid; Exemptions from the Requirement of a Tolerance; Final Rule” (Federal Register June 21, 2001) nor “Glutamic Acid; Pesticide Tolerance Exemption; Final Rule” (Federal Register January 7, 1998), which preceded it, met the criteria established by law for granting exemptions from the restriction of a tolerance.
How did spokesperson Andersen excuse the fact that the EPA approved processed free glutamic acid for use in an EPA approved spray? First, said Andersen, the free glutamic acid used in the spray is naturally occurring, and it’s 99.3 per cent pure pharmaceutical grade L-glutamic acid. Yet, in admitting that the free glutamic acid in AuxiGro is not 100 per cent pure L-glutamic acid, and that it is pharmaceutical grade, Andersen contradicted herself, and actually made the point that 1) if the free glutamic acid used in AuxiGro were truly natural, it wouldn’t be “pharmaceutical grade;” and 2) if the free glutamic acid used in AuxiGro were truly natural it would be 100 per cent, not 99.3 per cent pure L-glutamic acid.
Andersen said something else very interesting. She said that the EPA is well aware of the fact that MSG causes adverse reactions. However, when Andersen used the term “MSG” she was referring to the one food ingredient called “monosodium glutamate,” and not to the free glutamic acid in “monosodium glutamate” that causes adverse reactions. Failure to define terms, as Anderson did (and does) so handily, is both deceptive and misleading.
What Andersen did is very clever. What she said makes no sense at all. No one has ever claimed that the processed free glutamic acid in AuxiGro comes out of a box labeled “monosodium glutamate.” So for her to say it doesn’t, is meaningless. On the other hand, the claim has been made that the free glutamic acid in AuxiGro will cause the same brain lesions, neuroendocrine disorders, adverse reactions and other diverse disease conditions that are caused by the free glutamic acid in “monosodium glutamate” and the other food additives that contain processed free glutamic acid. That claim is true, but Andersen does not address it. How do you refute someone who ignores legitimate questions and spews out irrelevant statements as though they pertained to your legitimate questions? You don’t. The EPA defense of its approval of use of processed free glutamic acid in plant “growth enhancers” and its registration of AuxiGro has two parts to it: 1) ignoring those who question EPA actions, and 2) making the irrelevant statement that AuxiGro does not contain MSG (monosodium glutamate).
Neither Andersen nor anyone else at the EPA ever addressed the criticism that approvals given by the EPA to allow the use of free glutamic acid and the product AuxiGro were inappropriate.
The EPA, which approved the used of processed free glutamic acid in plant “growth enhancers,” made a grievous error. But instead of recognizing and remedying that error once it was pointed out to them, the EPA began a cover-up. That cover-up included use of ambiguous words and phrases, half-truths, and downright lies told to consumers. The cover-up continued (and continues still) with a variation of those ambiguous words and phrases, half-truths, and downright lies told to legislators who inquire about spraying MSG into the environment.
You might find the Emerald BioAgriculture sales literature interesting
Sales literature promoting AuxiGro was once found on their Web site, but is now long gone. While Federal Register notices included the fact that there is processed free glutamic acid (MSG) in AuxiGro, the sales literature from Auxein Corporation did not mention the fact that their product contains free glutamic acid until the Truth in Labeling Campaign began to broadcast that information. In November, 1999, Auxein added deceptive, misleading, and untrue statements in an elaboration of its Product Page, wherein they essentially make the untrue assertion that the glutamic acid used in AuxiGro is chemically and biologically identical to that found in plants and animals.
Sales literature did (on September 12, 2000), however, contain the following:
HAZARDS TO HUMAN AND DOMESTIC ANIMALS â€“ CAUTION”
If you think you might be reacting to AuxiGro sprayed on crops, you might want to try to (contact Emerald BioAgriculture (formerly Auxein Corporation) at the addresses that follow. (A friend recently told us that he tried to contact them by e-mail, but his e-mail was returned unopened.) By law, the company is required to forward reports of adverse reactions to the EPA. You might want to ask the EPA if Emerald BioAgriculture did so.
John L. Mclntyre, Ph.D.
President & CEO
Emerald BioAgriculture (formerly Auxein Corporation)
3125 Sovereign Drive, Ste. B
Lansing, MI 48911-4240
Phone: (888) 828-9346
Fax: (517) 882-7521
(From time to time, their web page, http://www.auxein.com , can be accessed by password only.)
Evidence of poison
08 March 2007 11:59
A Limpopo medical doctor has documented a string of physical abnormalities — including
breasts on a five-year-old girl — that he believes are directly linked to the unregulated
use of agricultural chemicals.
Dr Johan Minnaar (44) has produced evidence of serious illnesses and disorders among his
patients in Groblersdal, where commercial farmers are spraying large amounts of
pesticides on crops.
Horrific cases include teenage boys temporarily “growing breasts” during spraying
seasons, miscarriages, partial facial paralysis, cancers and ear malfunctions. Many of his
patients suffer from milder poisoning symptoms, such as asthma, sinusitis, headaches,
dizziness and depression.
Minnaar, who has been practising as a doctor in Groblersdal since 1997, took the unusual
step of coming forward with his evidence after unsuccessful attempts to get government
and regulatory authorities to intervene.
He said: “Groblersdal is surrounded by farms growing mostly citrus and grapes, but also
cotton, vegetables and maize. Throughout the year there is constant crop spraying with
pesticides containing organophosphates and carbamates. No one has informed the
community what pesticides are being used, even though the law states people must be
notified before spraying.”
Minnaar started investigating after realising that symptoms he had experienced over six
years followed a pattern.
“I experienced chronic fatigue, nausea, muscle aches and pains, skin rashes and arthritis,
particularly from August till November, when there is a noticeable increase in the spraying.
On investigation, it became clear that other people had these symptoms at the same time.”
Last August, he became so ill that he had to stay at home for two weeks. His wife and
three children also showed symptoms. He began regularly testing his and his spouse’s
blood and the tests showed they were exposed to organophosphates and carbamate
Minnaar laid complaints with the registrar of the national agriculture department, the
water affairs department and the labour and health departments of the Limpopo
government. He also tackled the farmers, chemical companies and crop sprayers.
The spraying continued and, on two days in February this year, large amounts of
carbamate were released during the aerial spraying of citrus orchards. Residents were not
warned beforehand. Among those who later showed signs of poisoning were pupils of two
schools located in the orchards.
Minnaar said pupils regularly played on the sports fields during spraying. The teenage
boys who had consulted him about “growing breasts” in the spraying seasons attended the
In late January, a woman brought a five-year-old girl who had developed breasts to his
consulting rooms. Minnaar suspected it could be linked to poisoning and referred her case
to Limpopo government officials, who he met two days later.
“As with many patients, she had no access to medical facilities or funds. The authorities
undertook to get her medical testing and treatment, but we’ve heard nothing,” he said.
According to Professor Leslie London of the University of Cape Town’s health sciences
faculty, premature puberty and other hormonal abnormalities are symptoms of
contamination by pesticides containing “endocrine disruptors”.
A 2005 study of girls in Mexican farming areas, titled Altered Breast Development in Girls,
indicated that pesticides could affect breast development and lead to early puberty.
Said London: “It has been shown that endocrine disruptors can also affect sexual
maturation and differentiation. A study in Sri Lanka of a pesticide called endosulfan found
that boys living in villages below cashew nut plantations sprayed with endosulfan had
impaired sexual maturity and other reproductive impairments.”
“The problem of rural towns affected by agricultural application of pesticides is
ubiquitous,” he said. “Present regulatory and safety management methods really don’t
address this problem sufficiently.
“I think there is a view that if you choose to live in the country, you should accept this as a
way of life. That is a societal value decision, not a matter of science.”
The health department’s directorate of environmental health has announced plans to
launch a chemical safety programme in Groblersdal at the end of March. According to its
draft concept document, “the aim is to launch the programme to inform provinces that
national [government] is willing to assist them in the management of chemicals”.
The draft programme identifies schoolchildren, women, farmers and farmworkers, shack
dwellers, informal traders and manufacturers as the “most vulnerable communities in
municipalities that lack capacity to properly and satisfactorily deal with chemical safety
South Africa is a signatory to international conventions aimed at promoting chemical
safety, and the labour ministry said in October that chemical safety was “high on the
minister’s agenda”. But crop spraying is a highly technical industry, and pinpointing
contamination is difficult.
London said it was almost impossible for applicators in planes to control the drift of
chemical sprays. “Aerial application has been shown in some studies to drift more than
2km, even in the absence of strong winds.”
European countries strictly regulate the industry through buffer zones around residential
areas and warning systems, he added.
Gerrit van Vuuren, an aerial application consultant at Croplife South Africa, blamed mist-
spraying of crops on the ground. “It is absolutely wrong to conclude that because there is
a yellow aircraft spraying agrichemicals in an area, it must the reason for ill health effects,”
Van Vuuren said mist-blowers apply more than 1 000 litres of spray mixture a hectare,
compared to 30 to 40 litres in the case of aerial spraying. They also blow a significant
volume of the spray higher than 6m into the air.
“A couple of mist-blowers spraying thousands of litres of spray mixtures at night are less
visible than an aircraft spraying a couple of hundred litres in the morning.”
He said it was up to farmers to notify inhabitants and issue warnings. They were also
supposed to ensure no one entered their fields during spraying.
The environmental health unit at the Elias Motsoaledi municipality, under which
Groblersdal falls, said it was “busy investigating the usage of pesticides being sprayed
from aeroplanes, as nuisances do occur from these activities”.
But Minnaar is frustrated by government promises to investigate. “For all practical
purposes, the supposed controls are not working. While they keep promising to sort it out,
we are getting poisoned,” he said.