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TOPICAL DIGEST OF EVIDENCE.
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I. PURE AND IMPURE FOOD.
A. Pure foods.
F. Pure-food movements.
A. Adulterants used
D. Suggested amendments to the mixed-flour law.
A. General statements
M. Bread without baking powder
A. Renovated or process butter.
I. Fish and game.
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41 45 51 52 53 53 53 54 54 Page.
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63 64 64
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79 80 84 85
86 86 87 87
A. Ingredients of beer
E. Proposed legislation
A. Blending, artificial fabrication, and adulteration..
A. Ingredients, distillation, and aging -
G. Alcohol in general
A. Flavoring extracts generally.
E. Artificial mineral waters
A. In general.
E. Proposed legislation
A. Various preservative agents.
J. Proposed legislation
A. National Pharmacopoeia
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92 93 94 94 95 97 102 103 105 108
A. Foreign laws
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110 110 111
TOPICAL DIGEST OF EVIDENCE.
I. PURE AND IMPURE FOODS.
A. Pare foods.-Mr. HANNEY says that when he first came to this country, twelve or thirteen years before the date of his testimony (1899), he traveled all around the United States in search of pure foods, and discovered that English, German, and French manufacturers were well known to the people and that there were scarcely any American goods for sale. He mentions especially Cross & Blackwell, the Dundee Marmalade Company, Black & Son, and French manufacturers of peas, mushrooms, and asparagus. There was no such thing known in this country as high-grade asparagus or peas. There were one or two manufacturers in New York State putting up these articles in a small way, but there were none so good as the English, French, and Germans put up. There are now about 30 manufacturers in this country even better than the English, French, and German companies. Formerly the English, French, and German goods were the only ones that were known and truthfully labeled, though a few small American firms produced honest goods. (63, 64.)
Mr. FURBAY. connected with the Hazel Pure Food Company, of Franklin Park, Ill., feels that there is unfair competition with adulterated goods. He says very few business men in Chicago appreciate the pure-food question from a commercial standpoint, but that his company acts upon the principle that there is more money to be made out of pure foods carefully prepared and honestly labeled than out of adulterated products. He has striven to improve the health and welfare of the company's patrons by giving absolutely pure articles in competition with cheaper grades. He thinks his company can produce the goods and sell them at a larger profit even when some one else is selling goods containing illegitimate adulterations. He feels that all goods ought to be honestly labeled, but not always with the formula. He defines pure food as food containing no deleterious substance, and sold for what it is. Flour mixed with corn, if it is wo stated, is a pure product; if it contains Cum it is impure. (60, 61.)
Mr. Furbay says that Cross & Blackwell and other English firms, selling pure food properly labeled, drove American manufacturers out of the American market, although the Americans were producing the goods more cheaply. American manufacturers are now introducing a food of higher grade than can be imported. He accounts for the change in the character of American goods by saying that we have advanced in our general national character, and honesty has been found to be the best policy. The Hazel Pure Food Company wants to put out honest articles properly labeled because there is more money in it. Witness thinks business men will all come to see that. He supposes that the goods of Cross & Blackwell, and some other English manufacturers of preserves and marmalade, still top the market, because they are widely advertised and better known than others now placed on the market by such companies as his own. (62, 63.)
Mr. HANES, a salesman for the Battle Creek Health Food Company, says that most of the products of his company are ready cooked. He believes that no preservatives whatever are used, not even salt. Some of the foods consist of preparations of wheat and other grains, and others of nuts, either by themselves or combined with cereals and fruits. A full line of crackers and biscuits is offered in which no baking powder, soda, or lard is used. No animal fats are employed. A peanut butter is used, made by roasting and grinding peanuts. (261-264.)
Mr. BERRY says perfectly sound fresh fruit is bought in the market and put up in hermetically sealed cans. The time to buy the fruit is when there is a flood in the market, and the best fruits can be bought at a nominal price. (101.)
B. Extent of adulteration.-Dr. WILEY says that he has been reported by the newspapers as having stated that 95 per cent of all foods in the United States
were adulterated. What he did say was that probably 95 per cent of food products had been adulterated at some time or other in some country or other. (585.)
Dr. Wiley testifies that adulteration with materials deleterious to health is by no means so extensive as merely fraudulent adulteration. There is scarcely any article of human food which has not at some time in some country been adulterated, but the actual amount of adulteration in the market is very small. Of 100 food articles bought at random, other than ground spices or ground coffee, scarcely 5 per cent would be adulterated. Adulterations injurious to health are confined mostly to (1) coloring materials and (2) preservatives. (41.)
Professor FREAR, óf the Pennsylvania Agricultural College, says that in his investigations he has found very little adulteration of food which could be distinctly asserted to be injurious to health in the quantities in which the materials are commonly used, unless it be from the cumulative effects that might result from the continuous use of such materials. Continuous use might produce positive injury, particularly in the case of persons with rather weak digestion. He refers particularly to the use of coloring matters of mineral origin and coal-tar colors. (481.)
Professor JENKINS, of the Connecticut agricultural station, says that food adulteration in Connecticut has increased with competition and the demand for cheaper goods and the necessity of utilizing waste products. Cocoanut shells and the hulls of peas are mixed with spices, and prune stones with coffee. The adulteration which is obviously injurious to health has, however, decreased, on account of the increased activity of the health officers and inspectors. Existing adulteration is chiefly injurious in demoralizing honest trade and working frauds on the
In the four years' experience of the Connecticut station only a single adulterant has been found which is distinctly a poison. That is Marsh's yellow, a dye which is used in very small amounts in the adulteration of mustard. (449.)
Mr. MURRAY admits that the term " commercial” usually means something adulterated. (71.)
C. Injurious effects of fraudulent adulterations.—Prof. Victor C. VAUGHAN, dean of the medical faculty of the University of Michigan, says it is quite impossible to separate those adulterations directly detrimental to health from those which are simply pecuniary frauds, because an adulteration which may be undertaken for pecuniary gain will often injure health. (202.)
Professor PRESCOTT's opinion is that the substitution of one harmless food for another unknown to the consumer is a sanitary offense, for what is a wholesome food for one man is not wholesome for another. From the extreme complexity of the digestive processes and the highly organized condition of the human body, it becomes impossible to determine by chemical analysis precisely what food would be the most favorable to digestion and harmless for a given individual. People find out by experience what food is beneficial to them, but if substitutions unknown to the consumer are permitted that experience goes for nothing. (197, 198.)
D. Various kinds of adulteration distinguished.-1. Adulteration, sophistication, substitution.-Professor HALLBERG differentiates adulteration, sophistication, and substitution, direct substitution being the most important. He knows there is an immense amount of adulteration that should be stopped. (83.)
2. Compounds.- Professor MITCHELL, chemist to the Wisconsin dairy and food commission, distinguishes two classes of compounds: (1) Legitimate compounds, such as pancake flour, made of certain flours each of which is suitable for a pancake flour and adds to the value of the compound, making a mixture of a certain consistency and desirability. He classes breakfast foods also as legitimate compounds. (2) Additions for the sole purpose of diluting and increasing the bulk and weight, as in the case of pepper. In this case the consumer gets less pepper for his money than if he bought pepper at the full price and diluted it himself. Only the middleman and the jobber get the benefit of diluting with substances belonging to other classes of food.
Professor Mitchell thinks that where the foods are of the same class and one is a prepared substitute for the other, taking its place as food, the compound is permissible, but where the adulterant is simply to dilute, as water in milk or flour in pepper, the compound is not permissible. (118, 119.)
5. Antiseptics.-Professor JENKINS states that the Connecticut agricultural station classes anything as adulterated which contains salicylic acid or other modern antiseptics. (461.)
4. Tests for adulteration.-Dr. PIFFARD says the chemist is able to determine many adulterants very readily, but there are many others, such as mixed flour, which chemistry almost fails to determine, but which are readily determined by the microscope, and others, such as coloring matters, which are more readily and quickly determined by the spectroscope. (192, 193.)
E. Contaminated food.-1. Filth.-Dr. SCOBELL, president of the Society for the Promotion of Health, considers the subject of adulterated food a vital one, but that of contaminated food greater. The observations of this witness have been made in reference to the way foods are kept on sale. Breadstuffs in most small groceries are kept outside of dirty cases on shelving, the resting place of flies and dust. Bread, cookies, cakes, and crackers should be covered; bread should be covered with tissue paper. In this connection the witness mentions also dried fruits kept in open boxes; tea, coffee, and spices; milk, cheese, lard, and butter kept uncovered and near sinks; candy kept in uncovered pails, boxes, or baskets; figs, dates, and small fruits kept in open boxes; also cooked and salted meats and fish, and all foods not usually washed before use; uncooked meats kept on uncovered counters, open to the handling of passing crowds; vegetables and fruits exposed to dust from careless sweeping of stores, to atmospheric impurities, and to powdered filth from beasts and from the expiration of man. Housewives frequently complain of the hands of clerks in markets and groceries, as where their gory hands are not washed before cutting a steak. Witness pleads for an improvement in the care of food, and says the committee would do well to start a reform in the handling of food, and that the grocers and dealers obeying the committee's suggestions would have the hearty indorsement of women generally. Unless a reform is instituted witness predicts that women will center their entire patronage with the few meat dealers who are required by the laws of their church to keep themselves and their meat absolutely clean. The witness has found a case where tuberculosis was caused by eating meat from an animal killed by a shock on the head. Animals should be killed by letting off the blood. (51.)
Dr. SCOBELL has frequently seen milk with particles of filth on top, and says this should be reformed immediately and the animals taken care of. (52.)
Dr. WILEY says the care and cleanliness of the animals is as important to good butter as its handling in the market. Many dairymen neglect the cleanliness of the cows. (52.)
2. Lead poisoning.—Dr. WILEY says that poisonous and deleterious substances are often put into sterilized vegetable products by accident. The solder used for sealing cans is an alloy composed mainly of lead and tin, both of which are poisonous. Little pellets of solder dropped during sealing are acted upon by the acids of the vegetables or fruits, forming soluble salts of lead and tin. Tin plate, which is sheet iron washed with tin, is often adulterated; the witness has found as high as 13 per cent of lead in it, and says the use of such materials for packages should be prohibited. It is almost impossible to get tin free from lead, but the amount of lead should be regulated, as an excess of it causes a kind of poisoning known as painter's colic. Germany has a law regulating the amount of lead which may be present. For protecting metal from oxidization when the iron is applied in soldering many things are used, muriatic acid being one of them; it is applied with a cloth, which is often dirty, and often a drop, or sometimes more, of the acid runs into the food. (42, 43.)
Mr. WILLIAM S. EDWARDS, of Chicago, a dealer in mineral water, testifies that siphons containing lead have caused an immense amount of suffering throughout the country in the form of rheumatism and neuralgia, owing to lead poisoning from highly carbonated water being used through such siphons, where people suppose the siphons are block tin instead of lead. They are principally composed of alloys of lead and pewter, and highly carbonated water in passing through them acquires poisonous properties. At the World's Fair Mr. Edwards discovered 20 different alloys of block tin in use. He says the death of Dr. Robinson, at Hornellsville, N. Y., was caused by the use of water from siphons containing lead. (238.)
F. Pure-food movements.—1. National Pure Food and Drug Congress.-Professor FREAR says that a body called the Association of Agricultural Chemists of the United States was organized in 1884. It is composed chiefly of chemists of the United States Department of Agriculture, the United States Bureau of Internal Revenue, and the several colleges and agricultural experiment stations organized under the acts of Congress of 1862 and 1887. In 1895 this body appointed a committee to consider what national legislation was desirable upon the subject of pure foods. In 1897 the committee presented a draft of a bill, and soon after the Hon. Marriott Brosius introduced into the House a bill of substantially the same character. A little later a committee of citizens of the District of Columbia formulated a plan for a national conference of the interests specially affected by such legislation, and such a gathering was held in January of 1898. There were present representatives appointed by the heads of five of the national executive departments, by the governors of 15 Štates, by about 15 national trade, chemical, and health associations, and by a large number of State and local organizations.