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Give Labeling a Chance

In the grocery store anyone can find a plethora of goods that have the potential to improve human life in the simplest ways. Goods such as a Snickers bar, which can provide a little relaxation from an insane day at the job, or a gallon of milk, so that the kids can have something to drink with the nutritious breakfast that was also bought at the grocery store. Yet one aisle in this great place of choices destroys the relaxing candy bar or the weekly gallon of milk. This aisle is heavily perfumed and can not be avoided because it is placed smack-dab in the middle of the store.

This aisle is the chemical aisle. It contains things from Mr. Clean, which cleans up the spilled milk that dried on the linoleum floor, to Raid which is supposed to get rid of flies at the next family bar-b-que. Even though life in general would be easier and more enjoyable without insects that can be bothersome, it is not necessary to pollute the air, ground, food, and liquids that are used daily by the inhabitants of the planet Earth, nor is it necessary to give misleading information about the products being used to boost sales and get a higher profit.

The government should make stricter laws on the labeling of goods that contain chemicals which could be potentially hazardous to one’s health. First, “corporations are trying to mislead consumers into believing household pesticides are harmless,” according to Marion Moses, M. D. of the Pesticide Education Center in San Francisco (“Latest Organic”).

Raid, a product produced by S. C. Johnson Corporation, which is used to kill roaches, ants, and flies, has inscribed on the side of its container “MADE WITH PYRETHRINS: PYRETHRIN INSECTICIDE IS MADE FROM FLOWERS” (18). That fact is very reassuring in its own way, but what is not mentioned on the label is that only eight-tenths of one percent of Pyrethrin is actually used in the production of Raid (18), and that the most active ingredient is Dursban which can cause numbness, tingling sensations, incoordination, headache, dizziness, tremor, nausea, just to name a few(Extoxnet).

Also, over ninety-eight percent of Raids ingredients are inert, which do not have to be named on the label (“Latest Organic”). The government must stop companies from being able to hide ingredients used in their products and should be forced to tell the general public what is being used in the products. It is interesting to know that some of the most dangerous chemicals are not labeled, and, if they are, Dursban for example, they are labeled as something that does not pose any sort of danger.

Yet even if the chemicals are labeled, and all of the amounts are placed on the back of the product so that the consumer can see what is used in the item, who is going to go home and look the chemicals up in places like the Extoxnet site or in the encyclopedia to see if the chemical will hurt them. But still, those problems can be solved easily if the companies would just sit down and consider what is being done to the public and what should be done to solve the problem.

Fruits and vegetables are another problem all of there own though. It would be scary to see a label rite on the skin of an apple or a leaf of lettus. A list, that could be easily accessible, should be made up that states all of the chemicals sprayed on fruit. This way the dangers of chemicals such as Fonofos, which is primarily used on corn crops(Extoxnet), would be available and people would be aware of the potential hazards that come with the chemicals used in their products.

Labeling or letting the general public know what is being used on apples to keep worms off them should be enforced by the government. It would be a relatively easy process since the companies already know what chemicals are being used on their products. But as long as Corporate America still feels the need to hide every little thing from the public, the public is doomed to walk up and down the aisles of the supermarket so that they can find one can of insecticide that might be able to kill the flies which are flying around the potato salad.

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