Here’s a truly hilarious piece of drama from the world of organic products. In posting a recent article about Amazon.com buying Whole Foods, I mentioned three turmeric products sold by Amazon.com that contained lead, a heavy metal that can be extremely toxic when consumed in high concentrations. This wasn’t some all-out attack on the brands mentioned, by the way; it was just a demonstration that Amazon.com doesn’t test the products it sells. As a result, Amazon ends up selling a lot of food, supplements and dietary products that contain rather concerning levels of lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic and other metals or elements.
One of the brands I mentioned in the story was Indus Organics, whose turmeric powder tested at over 225 ppb lead for Lead-206 (Pb-206).
In response to the article, someone claiming to be from Indus Organics threatened to sue Natural News if we didn’t immediately remove that assertion, claiming that the product contained no lead at all. Here’s where the laughable scientifically illiteracy really comes out, by the way: Almost nothing is 100% free of all lead. Anyone who thinks their products contain “no lead” whatsoever isn’t very well informed on matters of food composition. (Then again, some other companies use labs that actually try to find no lead by relying on outdated equipment incapable of detecting lead at ppb concentrations.)
In any case, in all the years that Natural News has been conducting independent science and publishing the ICP-MS test results for various brand names, not once have we ever been proven wrong. Not once have we been successfully sued. Not once have we had to retract even a single published heavy metals concentration number, including across the 800+ products tested and listed in my top-selling science book Food Forensics.
Why is that? Because our lab — CWCLabs.com — is an ISO-accredited laboratory specializing in analytical excellence for food and environmental samples. The accreditation means we are tested by third-party independent organizations and audited with on-site inspectors. Not only do we know exactly what we are doing when it comes to heavy metals, some of the leading food organizations in the industry are now coming to us to help validate new metals analysis methods because our reputation is that we’re the most dedicated and accurate food science lab in the industry. (I just spent four months scripting our new liquid handling robot, by the way, which adds even more automation and accuracy to all our sample prep and external standards preparation processes.)
With that in mind, I’ve decided to release the full ICP-MS elemental analysis results for the Indus Organics turmeric, so you can see not just the lead it contains but also the other elements it contains such as cadmium, zinc and so on. I’m also reaching out to Indus Organics to see if they would like us to help them with their science and even possibly carry their products in our store (once they meet our strict requirements). So this isn’t some sort of “attack” on Indus.
By the way, neither the cadmium nor lead levels in their turmeric product are in the “red alert” level at all. These are nowhere near the highest numbers we’ve seen in turmeric products, for example. But for someone to say this product contains “no lead” is factually false and scientifically ignorant. (All turmeric contains lead. It’s just a question of how high the concentration is. That’s why I stock up on “clean” turmeric whenever I find a clean batch, which is becoming increasingly difficult…)
See the full lab test results for Indus Organics turmeric
View the full PDF at the following link:
Details from the analysis:
Acquisition date and time: 5/9/2017 at 5:34 PM
Internal lab sample #: R3916
Dilution of sample preparation: 122.3391
Calibration type: External calibration
Virtual Internal Standard Fit type: Linear
Lead isotopes tested: 206, 207, 208
RSD (Relative Standard Deviations) of lead isotopes tested: 1.9, 1.8, 0.6
Lead (Pb) concentrations detected (ppb): 228.707, 216.796, 222.106
Cadmium isotopes tested: 111, 114
Cadmium concentrations detected: 78.824, 76.993
Mercury isotopes tested: 200, 201, 202
Mercury concentrations detected: 0.000, 0.000, 0.000
Internal standards used for calibration: Sc, Ge, In, Te, Tb, Bi
Bismuth-209 is the closest ISTD to lead (Pb), and it showed a recovery % of 92.8% in analog detection mode with 3 reps x 0.2 seconds detection time
All analysis conducted in Helium mode.
Here’s a photo of the actual Indus Organics product we tested, purchased from Amazon.com:
Note that this product apparently has no lot number. The bar code on the front is the product bar code, not a production lot number. On the bottom of the product, there’s a sticker that describes a “use by” date, but there’s no lot number accompanying it:
Unless I’m missing something here, having no visible lot number on the product would mean Indus Organics is non-compliant with basic FDA regulations for food safety. How can a company sell products to the public with no lot number on them? How does a company issue a recall for a contamination issue if they don’t even have lot numbers? How do they even track which lot of raw materials went into which production lots? If it’s true that this product has no lot number on it, there’s no question in my mind that it violates FDA food safety regulations.
Bottom line: Natural News testing results are trusted by millions of readers for the simple reason that they’re irrefutable
The takeaway from all this is that when Natural News publishes heavy metals lab testing results, you can take those results to the bank. Nobody is more dedicated to clean food science than Natural News. No lab in the world is more accurate and passionate about clean food than my lab, CWC Labs, which is increasingly recognized worldwide for analytical accuracy. I recently co-authored a science paper published in the peer-reviewed LC/GC science journal, by the way. It’s entitled “Liquid Chromatography–Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry for Cannabinoid Profiling and Quantitation in Hemp Oil Extracts.”
If you want to know the truth about what’s really in your food, spices, supplements and dog food, then get ready for a massive release of new data this year. We’re ramping up for a huge release of more lab testing numbers for off-the-shelf products, including chocolate bars, dog food and more.
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By the way, if anybody from Indus Organics is reading this, we’d love to carry your products in our store once we conduct lab testing to make sure your products meet our strict requirements (and note that your turmeric currently does not meet our requirements, so you would need to find a cleaner source, and you would need to print lot numbers on your products). Contact us if you’d like us to help retail your products to the Natural News universe of fans and readers. We can be a very valuable partner for you because we do all the lab testing on our dime, so you pay nothing. Our goal is to help small companies produce cleaner food and health products, so let us know how we can help you achieve that.