CULVER CITY, Calif., April 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- On April 11, 2013, Dr. Tsananagurayi Tongesayi of Monmouth University presented a study at the American Chemical Society announcing that "rice from Asia, Europe and South America had 20-60 times higher toxic levels of lead than is allowed by the Food & Drug Administration." The news caused an international uproar, as breaking news outlets from BBC to TIME magazine issued reports. On April 19th, Dr. Tongesayi admitted he was having an "issue" with his measuring instruments and recalled his paper. Consumers remain unaware of the flawed nature of the study. World rice expert, David Janow, sets the record straight to quell consumer's fears about rice.
Since 2002, David Janow has set the standards for rice processing, is a sought after expert by the FDA, USDA and is a founding member of the World Rice Alliance, providing the food industry with clean sources of rice. He notes:
- Rice, like other vegetables, fruits and grains is a translocator grown in water, soaking up whatever is in the environment whether naturally occurring or due to pollution. Manufacturers are required to test, especially if sold in California under Proposition 65's guidelines.
- There are areas throughout the world where industrial contamination has affected the soil and everything that grows from it can be infested with heavy metals. The Hunan Province of China, where rice is grown, is extremely polluted. However, China is a 3.7 million square mile country with rice fields all over, far away from polluted areas.
- Food companies know that lead is an inherent challenge with rice and are careful to source from the most pristine parts fields and change sources if tests show new levels. They create technology to remove additional heavy metals. Rely on the World Rice Alliance for clean sources.
- Most rice ingredients are extracted with a highly noxious gasoline product called "hexane." Since 2005, natural enzyme methods have been used by some companies; look for them when buying food products.
- In 2012 when a Dartmouth study demonized arsenic in rice, researchers failed to convey the difference between inorganic and organic arsenic, the latter is naturally occurring, posing no known health risk. The study also measured levels in finished products which doesn't single out rice as the problem.
"The absorption of lead in translators has always been a challenge. While there are polluted places in the world where rice fields exist, the standards and technologies to ensure excellent products can be trusted. We recently created a technology which ensures that 50-70% of heavy metal residue can be removed. Blanket statements about not trusting "rice from Asia;" a continent that makes up 8.7% of the earth's surface, is not a responsible scientific statement."
Janow's team spoke directly with Dr. Tongesayi who said:
- The rice in the study was sourced from "New Jersey grocery stores."
- The researchers did not identify or disclose where exactly in "Asia, Europe and South America" the contaminated rice originated.
- "The results from one of the places we had sent our samples just came in and all levels are less that 1 ppm using a different method even though XRF results from another lab still gave high values in the ppm range. I will be raising the issue of the XRF instrument with the supplier of the instrument, Innov-x-systems. I have been talking to their technical guys and they were assuring me that everything was okay. It is not the first time that XRF instrument was used for analysis of heavy metals in food with levels of metals reported at levels less than 5ppm. Because of the conflicting results, I will be recalling our accepted paper."
Janow provides this advice for consumers: "Take responsibility for the food you buy and ingest. Read labels. Stay informed. Question generalizations."
David Janow, CEO of Axiom Foods, is a world authority on rice and is called upon by the FDA and the USDA for expert opinion on safe manufacturing practices and standardization for the industry. His Oryzatein® rice protein is used by the USDA in clinical studies. Janow has scoured the world for pristine rice sources and founded the World Rice Alliance to ensure excellent sources for food manufacturers. Axiom Foods is the world's first, largest, and most innovative source for allergen-friendly, hexane-free whole grain brown rice ingredients and known for their natural and proprietary methodologies for extracting fractions of whole grain brown rice and other plant proteins.
Alyson Dutch, Brown + Dutch PR, Inc.
310.456.7151, [email protected]
Kay Abadee, Axiom Foods
520.225.0464 x 1000, [email protected]
SOURCE Axiom Foods