Toxins In Food Consumables and Packaging

Alberta premier makes travel plans for Fort Chipewyan

EDMONTON – Premier Ed Stelmach announced Thursday he will visit Fort Chipewyan after University of Alberta student advocates presented him with a round-trip ticket.

It will be Stelmach's first trip to the northern Alberta hamlet, where some residents insist they are being poisoned by oilsands contaminants.

Students from Stand With Fort Chipewyan delivered a $220 plane ticket just one day after Stelmach announced he will spend $84,000 to travel to India with his wife. Elders from the Mikisew Cree Nation joined students for the ticket presentation.

"He is advocating, obviously, for the wrong Indians -- no pun intended," said George Poitras, former chief of the Mikisew Cree Nation.

"He is spending $80,000 plus to go to India, I think it is a very sad commentary on his priorities."... Read more »

High exposure to BPA linked to low sperm count

CHICAGO – Chinese factory workers exposed to high levels of the plastics chemical BPA had low sperm counts, according to the first human study to tie it to poor semen quality.

The study is the latest to raise health questions about bisphenol-A and comes two weeks after Canada published a final order adding the chemical to its list of toxic substances.

Whether the relatively low sperm counts and other signs of poor semen quality translate to reduced fertility is not known. Study author Dr. De-Kun Li, a scientist at the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research in Oakland, Calif., noted that even men with extremely low sperm counts can father children.

But Li said finding that BPA may affect sperm is troubling because it echoes studies in animals and follows his previous research in the same men that linked BPA exposure with sexual problems.... Read more »

Manipulate food prices to fight obesity: panel

An expert panel commissioned by the Heart and Stroke Foundation is urging governments to slap a tax on sugared soft drinks, subsidize the poor to eat fruit and vegetables and give farmers incentives to grow more fresh produce, in a novel new take on Canada’s obesity epidemic.

The price of food has a proven impact on weight, and economic sticks and carrots should be invoked to combat the growing weight crisis, the panel concludes in a 79-page report.

The group’s fiscal-policy approach to the obesity issue is bound to generate controversy. Its lead author insists, however, that the soda-tax and other proposals do not represent nanny-state intervention into diet and behaviour.

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