Friday, February 27, 2009

Who's Faking Whom?

This article from today's AP...

ERWIN, Tenn. — A man has been arrested after police said he used counterfeit money to purchase fake OxyContin pills from an undercover officer.

Officers said it was "obviously bad money" with some bills printed on just one side.
--- one wonders whether the OxyContin pills were "obviously fake" too.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Small Business, Big Recall

The peanut butter recall has had an enormous impact on businesses. There have been 2,100 processed and packaged foods recalled according to the That’s an enormous amount and not all of the companies that have been impacted are large, well funded entities that know how to deal with recalls. Many of the companies are small and have neither the resources or know how to deal with an event like this. The has an interesting article on the disadvantages that small businesses have when dealing with large recalls. It’s a real problem that deserves more thought. Our food doesn’t just pass through large producers; it is also handled by tons of small businesses. It’s important that those businesses have traceability and recall solutions that are just as effective as the larger food producers. That helps keep dinner tables safe and businesses solvent.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Counterfeiting's Cruel Calculus

Once again Nigeria has made headlines with fake infant teething formula laced with a poisonous glycerin substitute. 84 children have died after being given My Pikin Baby Teething Mixture that included diethylene glycol.

Because diethylene glycol looks, smells and tastes like glycerin, a sweet syrup commonly used in a wide range of medicines, foods and toothpaste, counterfeiters calculate they can enhance their profit by substituting diethylene glycol, which is relatively cheap, for the more expensive but harmless glycerin.

The same calculus led Chinese dairy farmers to contaminate milk with deadly melamine.