MORTON GROVE, Ill., April 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Lifeway Foods, Inc., (Nasdaq: LWAY) today issued a statement to reassure consumers that its complete line of Kefir cultured dairy products remains entirely safe to consume and enjoy in the wake of the nuclear incident in Japan based on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Environmental Protection Agency's determination that the situation poses no public health concern in the United States.
In response to numerous phone calls and emails received from customers regarding milk safety and radiation levels, Lifeway CEO Julie Smolyansky said Lifeway's milk supply has not been affected and customers have no need to worry. In making the announcement, Smolyansky also stated the company plans to donate $10,000 to the American Red Cross in support of the organization's Japanese earthquake and tsunami relief efforts.
"We take the safety of our products very seriously and employ numerous measures to ensure that they remain not just safe to consume but also wholesome and free of any kind of artificial chemicals or other additives. All of the milk used in our products comes from U.S. dairy farms located in the Midwest, thousands of miles from the affected Fukushima power plant. Despite the distance and unlikely risk of a threat, the FDA and EPA continue to work closely with dairy farmers and dairy food producers like Lifeway to ensure the safety of our milk supply and all downstream products. They have assured us that any level of radiation detected to date remains extremely miniscule—more than 5,000 times below the FDA's protective threshold—and poses no threat to human health, even for children and infants. Based on this evidence, we concur that there is no reason for concern about the safety of our products," she said.
"Meanwhile, our thoughts remain with the people of Japan who have been so severely impacted by the unimaginable devastation brought on by the earthquake and tsunami. To that end, we have contributed $10,000 to the American Red Cross' international relief efforts to provide emergency assistance, medical services and other support for the residents affected. We also encourage our customers to join us in supporting the relief and recovery efforts by contributing to the American Red Cross at www.redcross.org."
While some minute levels of radiation were detected in milk supplies originating from Spokane, Wash. last month, the FDA has indicated that at the level detected, an individual would need to consume some 4,227 8-ounce glasses of milk to equal the same level of radiation exposure from a single chest x-ray. Still, the EPA has stepped up its routine monitoring for radiation in milk, as well as precipitation, air and drinking water, in the wake of the nuclear event in Japan. Furthermore, all milk-based products, including Lifeway's Kefir beverages, Frozen Kefir, Helios, Organic Green Kefir, ProBugs, BioKefir, and Farmers Cheese, along with all Starfruit Cafe frozen treats made from Lifeway Kefir, are entirely safe.
Lifeway's cultured dairy products offer a creamy and delicious probiotic boost courtesy of the company's exclusive lineup of 12 live and active cultures. With convenient packaging for spoon-free, on-the-go enjoyment, Lifeway Kefir products support a healthy immune system, support digestive health and more. The company's products are made with clean, renewable energy sources from fresh, local ingredients for better flavor and reduced energy consumption.
Currently found at more than 5,000 retailers nationwide, Lifeway products are available at Costco, BJ's, Safeway and Whole Foods, to name a few. The company is currently celebrating its 25th Anniversary with a nationwide Lifeway Kefir tour, working its way across the country with a series of appearances at family events, college campuses and consumer events complete with human-powered blender bikes that will mix Lifeway Kefir smoothies on the spot and to raise $25,000 for local charities.
For more information about Lifeway Foods' Kefir products, visit www.lifewaykefir.com. And, for more information about U.S. regulatory agencies' response to the Japanese nuclear incident, visit the U.S. FDA's webpage on Radiation Safety or www.epa.gov/japan2011.
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About Lifeway Foods, Inc.
Lifeway Foods, Inc. (LWAY), recently named one of Fortune Small Business' Fastest Growing Companies for the fifth consecutive year, is America's leading supplier of the cultured dairy products known as kefir and organic kefir. Lifeway Kefir is a dairy beverage that contains 10 exclusive live and active probiotic cultures plus ProBoost™. While most regular yogurt contains only two or three of these "friendly" cultures, Lifeway Kefir products offer greater nutritional benefits and support a healthier life. Lifeway produces various different flavors of its drinkable Kefir and Organic Kefir beverage, and recently introduced a series of innovative new products such as a children's line of Organic Kefir called ProBugs™ with a no-spill pouch and kid-friendly flavors like Goo Berry Pie and Strawnana Split. In addition to its line of Kefir products, the company produces a variety of probiotic cheese products. Lifeway also sells frozen kefir, kefir smoothies and kefir parfaits through its Starfruit™ retail stores.
SOURCE Lifeway Foods, Inc.