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Thursday, August 15, 2013

Botulism - don't blame the pipe

It all starts here - you've probably seen the signs on dairy farm gates around the country - it all starts here. Fonterra have tagged their farms as the source of all things good, but this article by Sandy Finnie describes something altogether worrying that might be 'starting' on those farms and ending up in the infant formula that Chinese parents are feeding to their young.

"A veterinarian and farm consultant doubts the recent Fonterra botulism scare was caused by a dirty pipe, and says he is sitting on material that will embarrass the dairy giant further.

Matamata veterinarian and farm performance consultant Frank Rowson says Fonterra should be tracing the source of the Clostridium botulinum bacterium back to farms or their own water supply."

Frank Rowson is suggesting that it's dirty feed, rather than a dirty pipe causing the 'system' to become contaminated with botulism bacterium. His is a claim that will have the industry worried, given that they have gone to some lengths, in my opinion, to keep the lid on the intense use of feeds other than fresh green grass, that are now routinely fed to the country's dairy cows.
He's also implicating glyphosate in the issue, saying that it's use fosters the growth of Clostridia.
Sobering information, in my view.

"The dirty pipe would be contaminated by product from cows or water supply and the organism would multiply in the dirt in the pipe. Therefore they should be tracing back to farms or their own water supply.

"The most likely source is on farm in silage or grains/soy in mixed rations, all of which have glyphosate which stimulates growth of Clostridia and other pathogenic bacteria and fungi.

"That's what gets into the pipes, otherwise, I hope it is not in their water."

It's understood the whey was never tested for glyphosate because Fonterra believed it is not related to the current quality issue."


JayWontdart said...

Sent an email Robert, we would love your company on Saturday night if you're in the area. I promise, clean pipes and mixed rations! :-)

robertguyton said...

Got it. Congrats on the clean pipes. I expect your hear from Theo soon.

The Professional Countrywoman said...

As soon as you get the intensive bordering on factory style industrial type farming that fonterra promotes you just get out of balance and problems occur. It's the same with the meat industry and all other forms of mass food production. Then they have to bring in food safety regs that squeeze out the small to medium producer and penalise the very producers that we need to have a healthy productive nation.
Just returned from driving from Otago as far as Whangarei and back. Lots of languishing and decaying hot houses everywhere - been superceded again by the big industrial factory style farming. Makes me wild!