State Pushes Fish Grocers to Warn Consumers

A state government is taking some grocery chains to court to try to force them to post warnings about mercury in fish. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham explains:

Transcript

A state government is taking some grocery chains to court to try to force them to post warnings
about mercury in fish. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham explains:


Just about any fish has trace amounts of methyl-mercury in it due to pollution. But some predator
fish, such as swordfish, shark, and some tuna have higher levels of mercury. The State of
California is taking five grocery chains that sell fish to court. It wants Kroger’s, Safeway, Trader
Joe’s, Albertson’s and Whole Foods to warn consumers that higher levels of mercury can cause
cancer, birth defects and reproductive harm. Tom Dressler is with the California Attorney
General’s office.


“I mean, one example would be to post a warning at the fish counters where the products are sold.
We’re not asking for warning labels on the packages. We just want a clear, reasonable warning
posted that informs consumers and does some good.”


The case is important because California often leads the nation in setting new standards for
environmental law.


For the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, this is Lester Graham.

Common Vaccines Contain Toxic Chemical

When you go to get your flu shot, there’s a good chance you’ll also be getting a dose of a toxic chemical. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham reports:

Transcript

When you go to get your flu shot, there’s a good chance you’ll also be getting a dose of a toxic
chemical. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham reports:


Thimerosal long has been used as a preservative in vaccines. But it contains mercury, and mercury
is not good for anyone. In children it can damage intellectual and nervous system
development. The mercury preservative has been removed from many vaccines, but Barbara Loe
Fisher with the National Vaccine Information Center says it’s still used too often.


“We still have it in influenza vaccine, diptheria-tetanus, some hepatitis B vaccines. Those are all
given to children. And there’s a pneumococcal vaccine that’s given to sick children that also has
Thimerosal, so, you know, on any given day a child could get more mercury than they should be
exposed to because the manufacturers just haven’t gotten it out of all the vaccine.”


Loe Fisher says manufacturers can produce the vaccines in single dose vials, eliminating the need
for the preservative, but the pharmaceutical companies have been resistant because it’s cheaper to
produce multi-dose vials with the mercury preservative.


For the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, this is Lester Graham.