The Year in Food 2007

The Manchurian Can of Food

Cheap Chinese food comes at a price, for both pets and people. Earlier this year, chow for Fido was found to contain Chinese wheat gluten contaminated with melamine, a chemical used to make plastics and fertilizer, and ultimately was linked to 14 animal deaths in the United States. More than 150 brands of pet food were recalled, and human food from China had problems of its own. The U.S. later banned five types of Chinese fish and shrimp, citing tainted animal feed. Even nonfood items, such as Chinese cough syrup and toothpaste, were allegedly spiked with an antifreeze ingredient. The scares prompted California-based grocer Trader Joe’s to announce it will phase out single-ingredient foods from China by 2008. Meanwhile, many consumers opted to make their own dog food. —Jessica Su