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srthomas21

Imported Msg

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I like to eat Thai Food a lot because it generally is gluten free. I was told that MSG made in the states is made from Sugarbeets and is ok for Celiacs but I was told that MSG imported from other countries (like the MSG found in some imported Curry pastes) could contain gluten or be contaminated by gluten.

Anyone know anything about this? I will be sad if I can't go to my favorite Thai place anymore because of MSG.

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According to every credible source that I have seen, MSG is gluten-free. Period.

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According to every credible source that I have seen, MSG is gluten-free. Period.

Not true....MSG from China is Wheat based. I travled there this past summer. I did tons of research, and every source I found siad MSG is gluten free everywhere but China. Sorry, I do not recall where I gathered my info from. Some was from a gluten-free traveling book I have, but I do not have access to it right now to check. Point is, you should check on Thai food MSG, but I think it's okay.

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If there is indeed MSG that has wheat, the wheat still must be listed in the U.S. In the end, MSG is just not something to worry much about.

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MSG can be derived from many sources. Wheat gluten used to be the primary source but has now changed within the US.

Worldwide MSG is simply a waste by product commodity.

It will be produced from whatever waste vegetable proteins are most available and most economic.

I would think it is unlikely Thailand has rules about the source of MSG and even less enforcement, any more than it has rules about what drugs you can buy over the counter. Technically amphetamines (for instance) are illegal, in practice you can buy them over any pharmacy counter. Indeed, trying to buy any pharmaceutical products in Thailand usually means explaining you are NOT looking for uppers/downers or something to make you party all night.

I have a friend who lived in Thailand for 12 years and is married to a Thai wife. She is one of the upper class yet since 13 (she is now mid 30's) she has been taking a birth control pill, marketed at children. The specific pill can be bought over the counter and contains everything a 13 year old could want from a birth control pill. Weight gain is controlled via amphetamines and barbiturates and the huge codeine dose assures long term addiction. After Thailand my friend and his wife moved to Kuwait, then Canada then the UK. So far she has found illegal sources in each of thee places!

Bottom line: She want's a baby but not as much as she needs the 'birth control' pill. These pills are given out at school gates and available from any pharmacy. The 'problem' is widely known, indeed it was her parents informed my friend ... however it is also an effective means of population control for the government.

Unless you lived in countries like this then you are living a different reality.

In Thailand you can buy anything, including people ... to imagine they would control MSG sources is incredible.

Crimes only exist for the poor, anyone else can usually bribe their way out.

The very idea that Thailand would control the sources of MSG doesn't really bear thinking about? The idea they would happily mislabel and export it is the reality.

If you want to buy a slave in Thailand (as a foreigner) then you go to the border control or police, they will happily sell you slaves they have captured or a Thai girl sold by her parents. The people who enforce this will kill captured babies because they have no resale value, do you really think they will enforce detailed checking of the source of MSG???

It is absolutely laughable that a Thai exporter would care what the source of the MSG was and even if they knew would not declare it on labels. The obvious source for bulk buying MSG is China.

Unless you believe (also laughable) that the US tests every consignment for gluten then it is not safe to assume a country like Thailand would be safe.

The Chinese melamine in pet food and infant milk illustrates just how this works.

Melamine took some time to find as initial tests showed 'rat poison'... (aminopterin) however aminopterin is illegal in China ... (so?) the reason this was dropped is it was inconsistent with the symptoms.

However: the reason it was so hard to find what was the problem was really down to the normal contamination of chinese made food stuffs ... so many toxins were found that didn't match the symptoms.

My brother does extensive business in China, even though he tests the product he has to test every batch. Even though the manufacturer in China knows he tests they still send contaminated product with astounding regularity.

It's still marginally cheaper for him to buy from China but their answer everytime he gets a contaminated product he has to throw away is "buy elsewhere and see if we care".

Last time he visited he had to bribe the police so much that the Chinese source is becoming uneconomic.

The reality is the only pure product coming from Thailand are hard drugs where the penalty for delivering contaminated product is death. To imagine that Thai exports are somehow better controlled than Chinese ones is not the reality.

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lotsa stuff in their gfp..... could you maybe just stick to the topic......?

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Boy did you go off the rails there gfp. Please provide your evidence that MSG is improperly labeled.

Reality. We really don't need to worry about MSG.

richard

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Boy did you go off the rails there gfp. Please provide your evidence that MSG is improperly labeled.

Reality. We really don't need to worry about MSG.

richard

Why don't you provide evidence that MSG is properly labelled in Thailand?

My advice won't hurt anyone.

Your idea seems to be "We don't need to worry about MSG" Obviously you have spent a lot of time in Thailand and feel qualified to make this comment; you probably not only know the major food exporters but probably get invited to dinner by them on a regular basis. I'm sure on one of these occasions you probably discussed this at length at one of their beach houses.

Or perhaps not? Perhaps in the absence of you knowing ANYTHING about it you could just not make a comment?

Or it could be that food manufacturers in Thailand really don't care about the source of their MSG?

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It has always been my understanding that any imported product must comply with US regulatory law, which would include the listing of wheat if an ingredient.

Granted, corruption is prevalent in Asian countries. You can only arm yourself with information and make the best choice available. If a foreign product makes you ill, don't go there again.

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It has always been my understanding that any imported product must comply with US regulatory law, which would include the listing of wheat if an ingredient.

Granted, corruption is prevalent in Asian countries. You can only arm yourself with information and make the best choice available. If a foreign product makes you ill, don't go there again.

I agree if the item bothers you or you are worried about it you should avoid it. The FDA is well know to be very overworked and understaffed. 'Slip throughs' of toxic items and mass sickenings of our population from food borne illnesses are in the news on almost a daily basis. When the FDA is in the know about an issue they do act but it seems much slips through the cracks.

In the end the choice to trust or not trust an additive from outside the US belongs to the individual. Unfortunately we really don't know where a lot of our food ingredients really come from. The most we can do is look on labels and if something comes from a country we don't trust we don't buy it.

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I agree if the item bothers you or you are worried about it you should avoid it. The FDA is well know to be very overworked and understaffed. 'Slip throughs' of toxic items and mass sickenings of our population from food borne illnesses are in the news on almost a daily basis. When the FDA is in the know about an issue they do act but it seems much slips through the cracks.

In the end the choice to trust or not trust an additive from outside the US belongs to the individual. Unfortunately we really don't know where a lot of our food ingredients really come from. The most we can do is look on labels and if something comes from a country we don't trust we don't buy it.

Yes, in a perfect world everyone would follow the letter of the law and we'd be able to trust labels from anywhere but we all know that's not always the case. People have been made ill by things that got into foods or were mislabeled that have nothing to do with gluten. It doesn't seem that far-fetched to me that gluten could find it's way into an ingredient if it were cheaper or more available. I think it's prudent to use our own judgment when it comes to purchasing foods, especially with questionable additives from other countries. They may be perfectly safe, most certainly are, but mistakes and greediness do happen--the latter all too often.

I actually appreciated hearing the first-hand account of the business in Thailand. Very interesting--I hope that we can all get back to discussing these things in a nice, civil manner. After all, it's to our advantage to learn all we can in order to make the best decisions for ourselves--I know I continue to learn about all of this as time goes on.

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Nice reply gfp, and one of the rudest ever. I see you still refuse to show us where there's any harm going on.

richard

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Nice reply gfp, and one of the rudest ever. I see you still refuse to show us where there's any harm going on.

richard

Perhaps you might want to show where there isn't. It is not right to constantly demand that one person show links to everything they say and without providing links to 'prove' your side either. You and GFP seem to constantly disagree, perhaps you should both put the other on 'ignore'. You both have valuable insight to bring to the board and you both have the right to bring it.

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It has always been my understanding that any imported product must comply with US regulatory law, which would include the listing of wheat if an ingredient.

Granted, corruption is prevalent in Asian countries. You can only arm yourself with information and make the best choice available. If a foreign product makes you ill, don't go there again.

The corruption is really only the latter half the story ..

The problem is 3rd world countries do not have the laws in place to start with and manufacturers do not have an audit of where bulk ingredients come form.

MSG is MSG .. regardless of source. Governments want to maintain exports but this is way down the list of items, one of which (in common for most 3rd world countries) is not being overthrown.

Anyone following international politics will know Thailand has been on the brink of a coup for some time.

Short summary: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7584005.stm

The derivation of MSG from wheat or any other source is really a low priority.

Just one example: Traffic deaths in 3rd world countries accounted for 85-90% of 1.2 million fatalities worldwide.

(WHO Figures) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov:80/pmc/articles/PMC1247497/

Yes, people get sick from gluten but millions die in preventable road traffic accidents.

Millions in Thailand die of drug abuse... easily preventable illnesses or just lack of clean water in many rural areas.

(The latter being one of the present political problems for the current (military installed) government.)

Just take a step back ... they are so far away about worrying about allergens in food.

Corruption comes into play if they are 'discovered' by a country they export to.

With the right money to the right official their export credentials will be changed for a different company with no trace back to the original one.

As is so obvious from the melamine case, the FDA cannot possibly test each shipment, let alone each batch.

Even when they do what comeback would you have?

I personally have no idea of the source of MSG for Thai foods, more to the point the Thai food manufacturers probably have no idea either ...

This concept is really not strange .. who knows the origin of the gas they put in their car?

Regardless of the filling station brand it is a commodity, Exxon do not sell Exxon oil, Conoco Phillips don't sell CoP oil, they sell whatever they can source from wells to pumps as the cheapest.

The US, Europe and literally a handful of developed countries have the luxury have having enough food, power and clean water. Along with this luxury we can start to develop policies and rules for allergens in food.

3rd world countries are so far from this luxury... most would put clean drinking water way up the list.

MSG may be cheapest in Thailand from beet, rice or even the original seaweed ... the idea they would pay a premium (for instance exporting MSG from the US to make food to export) is really way out.

I actually appreciated hearing the first-hand account of the business in Thailand.

Much of this is second hand, one of my best friends lived in Thailand for 12 years and although I visited you can't really understand the reality under the 'tourist exterior' until you live in a country.

I have spent more than 50% of my adult life in 3rd world countries, Thailand has some specific problems but not vastly different to most 3rd world countries. We should remember that 'the developed' nations are not so far ahead in real terms.

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Prove there isn't harm going on, ravenwoodglass? That, of course, is impossible. As you well know (or should know anyway), I can't prove there's no harm going on anywhere in the world. Nice try.

richard

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Traffic fatalities in Thailand? GOOD GOLLY, I'll never eat MSG again!!!! Drug abuse, preventable illnesses, possible coup -- gosh, MSG must automatically be a terrible danger!!!!!

There is still nothing here showing us that MSG is a danger or has caused damage. Ravenwoodglass wanted me to prove there's never been damage, which is, of course, an absolute impossibility. It IS possibly, however, to show with certainty that we've been poisoned by MSG with gluten. I've yet to see that proof.

richard

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Prove there isn't harm going on, ravenwoodglass? That, of course, is impossible. As you well know (or should know anyway), I can't prove there's no harm going on anywhere in the world. Nice try.

richard

As you know, or should know anyway, I was referring to MSG and whether it is always safe when it is imported. You have the right to say the blanket statement that it is in all cases safe. I am simply saying that the choice to take the risk with foreign derived ingredients is up to the individual. Neither is really possible, as you know, or should know, to prove.

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