ARSENIC IN CHICKEN FEED AND CHICKEN

As a scientist, I thought I should share what I read in the Washington Post of Tuesday April 10 with my fellow St Lucians.  In that publication, Darryl Fears reported that Maryland is about to become the first state in the United States to ban the use of additives containing arsenic in chicken feed, a practice already prohibited in Canada and the European Union.
It was reported that the poultry industry in the United States use chicken feed containing Roxarsone, an arsenic-base drug used to fight parasites in animals, and that the United States produce billions of broiler chickens and chicken parts per year (no mention is made of the export of these products).
It is also reported that arsenic causes cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
The article states a high ranking US official as saying  “. . . we think the danger to public health and the environment was such that Maryland needed to take a major first step in eliminating this poison from our chicken”
I understand that we in St Lucia consume a very large quantity of chicken.  I therefore do not wish to cause undue alarm, but our local authorities and indeed our region, may wish to review the content of our chicken feed and source of importation of chicken parts.
This may be a small chicken matter but I am only sharing information which appeared in the press.  Further data are available is there is interest.
Our US Ambassadors to the region could be asked to investigate the veracity of this report in the best interest of our populations.

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