Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Real Formula For Peace

payasodhasvatīr mudā

kāmam — everything needed; vavarṣa — was showered; parjanyaḥ — rains; sarva — everything; kāma — necessities; dughā — producer; mahī — the land; siṣicuḥ sma — moisten; vrajān — pasturing grounds; gāvaḥ — the cow; payasā udhasvatīḥ — due to swollen milk bags; mudā — because of a joyful attitude.

During the reign of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, the clouds showered all the water that people needed, and the earth produced all the necessities of man in profusion. Due to its fatty milk bag and cheerful attitude, the cow used to moisten the grazing ground with milk.

The basic principle of economic development is centered on land and cows. The necessities of human society are food grains, fruits, milk, minerals, clothing, wood, etc. One requires all these items to fulfill the material needs of the body. Certainly one does not require flesh and fish or iron tools and machinery. During the regime of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, all over the world there were regulated rainfalls. Rainfalls are not in the control of the human being. The heavenly King Indradeva is the controller of rains, and he is the servant of the Lord. When the Lord is obeyed by the king and the people under the king's administration, there are regulated rains from the horizon, and these rains are the causes of all varieties of production on the land. Not only do regulated rains help ample production of grains and fruits, but when they combine with astronomical influences there is ample production of valuable stones and pearls. Grains and vegetables can sumptuously feed a man and animals, and a fatty cow delivers enough milk to supply a man sumptuously with vigor and vitality. If there is enough milk, enough grains, enough fruit, enough cotton, enough silk and enough jewels, then why do the people need cinemas, houses of prostitution, slaughterhouses, etc.? What is the need of an artificial luxurious life of cinema, cars, radio, flesh and hotels? Has this civilization produced anything but quarreling individually and nationally? Has this civilization enhanced the cause of equality and fraternity by sending thousands of men into a hellish factory and the war fields at the whims of a particular man?
It is said here that the cows used to moisten the pasturing land with milk because their milk bags were fatty and the animals were joyful. Do they not require, therefore, proper protection for a joyful life by being fed with a sufficient quantity of grass in the field? Why should men kill cows for their selfish purposes? Why should man not be satisfied with grains, fruits and milk, which, combined together, can produce hundreds and thousands of palatable dishes. Why are there slaughterhouses all over the world to kill innocent animals? Mahārāja Parīkṣit, grandson of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, while touring his vast kingdom, saw a black man attempting to kill a cow. The King at once arrested the butcher and chastised him sufficiently. Should not a king or executive head protect the lives of the poor animals who are unable to defend themselves? Is this humanity? Are not the animals of a country citizens also? Then why are they allowed to be butchered in organized slaughterhouses? Are these the signs of equality, fraternity and nonviolence?
Therefore, in contrast with the modern, advanced, civilized form of government, an autocracy like Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira's is by far superior to a so-called democracy in which animals are killed and a man less than an animal is allowed to cast votes for another less-than-animal man.
We are all creatures of material nature. In the Bhagavad-gītā it is said that the Lord Himself is the seed-giving father and material nature is the mother of all living beings in all shapes. Thus mother material nature has enough foodstuff both for animals and for men, by the grace of the Father Almighty, Śrī Kṛṣṇa. The human being is the elder brother of all other living beings. He is endowed with intelligence more powerful than animals for realizing the course of nature and the indications of the Almighty Father. Human civilizations should depend on the production of material nature without artificially attempting economic development to turn the world into a chaos of artificial greed and power only for the purpose of artificial luxuries and sense gratification. This is but the life of dogs and hogs.

 Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 1.10.6 Purport:
 To be nonviolent to human beings and to be a killer or enemy of the poor animals is Satan's philosophy. In this age there is enmity toward poor animals, and therefore the poor creatures are always anxious. The reaction of the poor animals is being forced on human society, and therefore there is always the strain of cold or hot war between men, individually, collectively or nationally. At the time of Mahārāja Yudhiṣṭhira, there were no different nations, although there were different subordinate states. The whole world was united, and the supreme head, being a trained king like Yudhiṣṭhira, kept all the inhabitants free from anxiety, diseases and excessive heat and cold. They were not only economically well-to-do, but also physically fit and undisturbed by supernatural power, by enmity from other living beings and by disturbance of bodily and mental agonies. There is a proverb in Bengali that a bad king spoils the kingdom and a bad housewife spoils the family. This truth is applicable here also. Because the King was pious and obedient to the Lord and sages, because he was no one's enemy and because he was a recognized agent of the Lord and therefore protected by Him, all the citizens under the King's protection were, so to speak, directly protected by the Lord and His authorized agents. Unless one is pious and recognized by the Lord, he cannot make others happy who are under his care. There is full cooperation between man and God and man and nature, and this conscious cooperation between man and God and man and nature, as exemplified by King Yudhiṣṭhira, can bring about happiness, peace and prosperity in the world. The attitude of exploiting one another, the custom of the day, will only bring misery.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Taste of Talks About Krishna

                                         Taste of Talks About Krishna
Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.25.25
Bombay, November 25, 1974

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Srila A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
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Nitai: (leads chanting, etc.) "In the association of pure devotees, discussion of the pastimes and activities of the Supreme Personality of Godhead is very pleasing and satisfying to the ear and heart. By cultivating such knowledge one gradually becomes advanced on the path of liberation, and therefore he is freed, and his attraction becomes fixed. Then real devotion and devotional service begin."


satam prasangan mama virya-samvido
bhavanti hrt-karna-rasayanah kathah
taj-josanad asv apavarga-vartmani
sraddha ratir bhaktir anukramisyati
 [SB 3.25.25]

So here it is recommended, satam prasangat, talks between devotees. Satam means devotee, not ordinary person; those who are devotees, sat. Sat and asat. There are two things. Sat means which exists, and asat mean which does not exist -- temporary. That is called asat. This material world is asat. Therefore Vedic injunction is asato ma sad gama: "Don't keep yourself within this material world." (aside:) That child... Asato ma.

So people who are interested in materialistic life, they are called asat. Caitanya Mahaprabhu was asked by a devotee that "What is the behavior of a Vaisnava, of devotee?" Vaisnava means devotee. (aside:) Who is this? Who is making noise? So Caitanya Mahaprabhu, being inquired, "What is the duty of a devotee?" (aside:) ...what is the sound?

Brahmananda: They're doing it purposely.

Prabhupada: Oh, that's all right. That's all right. Never mind. Caitanya Mahaprabhu said, asat-sanga-tyaga, ei vaisnava-acara [Cc. Madhya 22.87]. Asat-sanga-tyaga, ei vaisnava-acara. He, in one line, He said that "First of all, Vaisnava, his business is to avoid the company of asat." Asat means those who are materialistic interest. Asatah. Asato ma sad gama. This is very important thing. We have established this Krsna consciousness society -- means that to avoid the asat-sanga, to avoid the... Of course, we are preaching Krsna consciousness amongst the people who are interested in material subject matter. But we are not associating with them. We are associating with Krsna, because we don't talk anything except Krsna. We are not interested with their business. Everyone is interested with his own business. Similarly, we are interested with our own business, Krsna consciousness business. Even if we go to a materialistic person, we canvass, "Kindly become our member. Kindly read this book. Purchase this book," so we are not going to take their activities. We are trying to bring them in our activities.

So asat-sanga-tyaga, vaisnava-acara. The Vaisnava, he should be always careful not to intermingle, means not to take up their ideas and thoughts. No. That is vaisnava-acara. Asat-sanga-tyaga, ei vaisnava. And why they should be avoided? Asat eka stri-sangi, krsna-abhakta. Who is asat? Asat means those who are very much attached to sense gratification. Sense... The culmination of sense gratification is sex life. So those who are too much attached to sex life, stri-sangi, and krsna-abhakta, and not devotee of Krsna, they are asat. So those who are actually serious to make advance in spiritual life, they should avoid the asat.

asat-sanga-tyaga-ei vaisnava-acara
'stri-sangi'-eka asadhu, 'krsnabhakta' ara

So if we discriminate like this, then we shall be advancing. Apavarga-vartmani. Taj-josanad asu apavarga-vartmani sraddha bhaktir anukramisyati. Just like if we are diseased, there is infectious disease, epidemic, so we should be careful not to be infected by the infectious disease. Sri Sanatana Gosvami said in Hari-bhakti-vilasa... He has written one book, "The Behavior of the Vaisnava," Hari-bhakti-vilasa. So in that book he has recommended, avaisnava-mukhodgirnam putam hari-kathamrtam, sravanam naiva kartavyam. He has said that "One who is not Vaisnava by his behavior, by his action, by his mode of life, if he speaks something from sastra, especially hari-katha..." Hari-katha means Bhagavad-gita, the Puranas, out of which the Bhagavata, Mahapurana. So we should not hear from a professional reader, or avaisnava, or Mayavadi. Caitanya Mahaprabhu has warned, mayavadi-bhasya sunile haya sarva-nasa [Cc. Madhya 6.169]. If we hear Bhagavad-gita -- that is krsna-katha, hari-katha -- we should not hear from the Mayavadis or avaisnava. Then it will not be effective.

There are so many Mayavadis and avaisnava, they practically do not accept Krsna even the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and they dare to speak on Bhagavad-gita. Just see the fun. He does not accept Bhagavad-gita as it is, and he wants to comment and give his tika. So you'll never derive any benefit. Therefore here it is said, satam prasangat. You should hear Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam from the devotees, not from a third-class man, no. Third class means those who are materialistic. So therefore Caitanya Mahaprabhu has warned that mayavadi-bhasya sunile haya sarva-nasa. If you happen to hear from a Mayavadi, impersonalist, who does not accept Krsna as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, or does not know what is Krsna, if such person reads Bhagavad-gita and Srimad-Bhagavatam, you will never derive any benefit. You can go on hearing them for hundreds of years; still, you will never understand what is Krsna. That is forbidden. Sanatana Gosvami has forbidden, that avaisnava-mukhodgirnam putam hari-kathamrtam. Hari-katha, talks, discussion on Hari, or Krsna, that is amrta. Amrta means nectarine. If one hears, then he gets his amrta. Amrtatvam.

So amrtatvaya kalpate. Amrta means no more birth and death. Mrta means birth and death, mrtyu, but amrta means to stop birth and death. The whole spiritual life means to stop this birth, death, old age and disease, to get amrta, no more birth, no more death. That is the real aim of spiritual life. Of course, as it is stated in the Bhagavad-gita, the spiritual life begins if one is pious, if one is pious. Arto artharthi jijnasuh. Catur-vidha bhajante mam. Krsna said, "Four classes of men..." Catur-vidha bhajante mam sukrtinah arjuna. Sukrti. Sukrti means pious. One who has got background, pious life, not impious life, sinful life, such pious men, out of them, four classes of men, catur-vidhah, they come to devotional life, begins. Who are they? Artah, those who are distress; Artah artharthi, those who want some money; jijnasuh, those who are inquisitive; and jnani. So arto artharthi, they are in the lower grade. And jnani and jijnasuh, they are in the higher grade. But still, they are not pure devotee, because they want something. Artah, the distressed, he comes to Krsna in the temple or in the church to beg something, material profit. That is also good because he has come to Krsna. "Krsna, I am distressed. Kindly save me from this distressed condition." "Krsna, I require some money. Kindly, if You give me some money, I can live very peacefully." Generally. So because they have come to Krsna, therefore they are called sukrtinah. Sukrtinah means pious. And there are others, who are duskrtina, impious, sinful. Na mam duskrtino mudhah prapadyante naradhamah [Bg. 7.15]. They are not even human being who do not accept the authority of the Supreme Lord. Duskrtino mudhah. And they have been described as mudhah. Mudha means rascal, foolish. Real meaning of mudha is ass. So those who are like that, duskrtinah, and full of impious activities, naradhamah, lowest of the mankind, mayayapahrta-jnanah, whose knowledge has been taken away by the illusory energy, na mam prapadyante, they do not accept Krsna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead.

So in order to become a devotee of Krsna we must associate with devotee. Satam prasangan mama virya-samvidah. Then, by reciprocation with devotees, if one is... One comes to devotee also if one is pious. If something is there on the background, piety, then he comes to a devotee. So by mixing with devotee, by associating with devotee, our knowledge for salvation or getting out of the clutches of this maya, repetition of birth and death, increases. Satam prasangan mama virya-samvidah. The discussion on krsna-katha is viryavan. Just like when there is sex life, if the man is viryavan, there will be pregnancy. Similarly, if we hear from devotee, then immediate action will be there, some inclination that "Why not become Krsna conscious?" That is viryavan. "Why not become Krsna conscious?" That is called sraddha. Sraddha bhaktir anukramisyati. Taj-josanad asu apavarga-vartmani sraddha. This is called sraddha. If, by hearing from the devotees or in the association of devotees, one is inclined, "Now, why not become Krsna conscious?" that is very nice, sukrtinah, immediately the effect of pious activities. Adau sraddha. That is the beginning of spiritual life. And if you want to develop your spiritual life more and more, then satam prasangat, then you have to associate with devotees. Adau sraddha tatah sadhu-sangah [Cc. Madhya 23.14-15].

And sadhu we have described already in three, four verses. The summary -- a sadhu means a devotee. Api cet su-duracaro bhajate mam ananya-bhak. Ananya-bhavena, without any deviation, unflinching, staunch devotee, they are called sadhu. So we have to associate with sadhu. Satam prasangat. When you discuss about Krsna with sadhu or devotees, it becomes very pleasing. Satam prasangan mama virya-samvido bhavanti hrt-karna-rasayanah [SB 3.25.25]. Rasayanah means there is some taste. Just like you eat something; there is some taste. That is called rasa, or mellow. Then... Just like in the Bhagavad-gita Krsna says, raso 'ham apsu kaunteya [Bg. 7.8]. Rasa. Rasa means when you are thirsty, when you drink water, you taste something very nice to quench your thirst. So Krsna has instructed that "To begin with, you can think of Me, aham, while you drink water." It is not difficult. Everyone can practice it, so easy thing. Everyone can practice it. Everyone drinks water, and the rasa, the taste, the nice taste, when you are thirsty, how it is palatable by drinking water. Without water, sometimes we die, and by getting little sip of water, we live. Water is so important. So water, we drink everyone, and there is rasa, that taste. That taste, if we simply think, "Here is Krsna," very easy thing... Raso 'ham apsu kaunteya prabhasmi sasi-suryayoh [Bg. 7.8]. As soon as you see the sunlight in the morning, you can think. Krsna says. Why do you say, "Can you show me God?" God is showing you Himself. Why don't you see it? If you close your eyes, how you can see God? He says, "I am this." According to our position...

Just like here it is said, sraddha ratir bhaktir anukramisyati. Anukrama means gradually, not that all of a sudden you can expect to see God, but you become qualified to see God. This is the way. Sraddha ratir bhaktir anukramisyati. Adau sraddha. Just like with sraddha. Somebody is thinking, "This hari-kirtana is nuisance." They are amongst those, duskrtino mudhah. Those (who) are thinking that this hari-kirtana, hari-katha, which we are trying to spread all over the world, and they are accepting all over the world... And in India, especially here in Bombay, they are sending complaints to the police that we are creating nuisance. Just see the fun. Where Krsna is born and krsna-katha is there, Bhagavad-gita -- we have not imported this book from elsewhere -- now we are so fallen that we are thinking that "This krsna-katha, this chanting of Hare Krsna, is creating nuisance." Just see how much we have advanced after getting independence. They are complaining that we are creating nuisance. Satatam kirtayanto mam yatantas ca drdha-vratah [Bg. 9.14]. Kirtana is recommended in the Bhagavad-gita satatam, always, twenty-four hours. Satatam kirtayanto mam yatantas ca drdha-vratah [Bg. 9.14]. And worshiping the Deity with attention, with care. These things are going on here, and people are complaining we are creating nuisance. Just see. Asat is so dangerous. Therefore we have to create a society of sat. Then the world will be saved. Otherwise they are going to the hellish condition of life.

na te viduh svartha-gatim hi visnum
durasaya ye bahir-artha-maninah
andha yathandhair upaniyamanas
te 'pisa-tantryam uru-damni baddhah
 [SB 7.5.31]

matir na krsne paratah svato va
mitho 'bhipadyeta grha-vratanam
adanta-gobhir visatam tamisram
punah punas carvita-carvananam
 [SB 7.5.30]

So if we want to save ourself-We do not know how to save. Gadurika-pravaha. Gadurika-pravaha-nyaya. There is a logic of gadurika-pravaha. One man is doing something, and another man is following. Of course, if you follow a saj-jana, a devotee, that is very nice. But if you follow a rascal, then you also become rascal. But at the present moment the whole world is full of rascals, mudhah, duskrtinah, naradhamah. "Why do you call mudhah duskrtinah naradhamah? There is so much advancement of education. There are so many universities, so many degrees." But Krsna says, mayayapahrta-jnanah: [Bg. 7.15] "Their so-called knowledge has no value because the essence of knowledge is taken away by the illusion." "Now why you say? They are educated. No, their knowledge has been taken away? Why? What is the reason?" The reason is asuram bhavam asritah: "They have taken to the nonsense philosophy of godlessness." That's it. For this reason their so-called education, university education, degrees, are simply illusion of maya.

Bhaktivinoda Thakura has sung one song, jada-vidya jato, mayara vaibhava. This material education without God consciousness is expansion of the influence of maya. Jada-vidya jato, mayara vaibhava, tomara bhajane badha. They are simply impediments in the matter of advancing Krsna consciousness. Tomara bhajane badha. Anitya samsare. And why? Now, result of godless material education means that anitya samsare moha janamiya. We are already illusioned. Anyone who has come to this material world, he is illusioned. But advancement of so-called material education means the increasing of the same illusory propaganda. Jada-vidya jato, mayara vaibhava, tomara bhajane badha, anitya samsare moha janamiya. They are trying to become happy in this temporary material life. He has forgotten that he is eternal. Even if we become very happy, temporary life in this life, that will also illusion because we will not be allowed to stay and enjoy the status. But they do not understand.

So these things are to be understood in the association of devotees. A devotee knows everything. Tattva-darsinah.

tad viddhi pranipatena
pariprasnena sevaya
upadeksyanti te jnanam
jnaninas tattva-darsinah
 [Bg. 4.34]

Tattva-darsi means who has actually seen the truth. Om tat sat. One who has seen the Supreme Truth. That Supreme Truth is Krsna. Therefore Krsna says that "You are searching after the truth. You are studying the Vedic literature, Vedanta-darsana. That is very good. But what is the goal of Vedanta-darsana?" Veda means knowledge, and anta means the end, Vedanta, the ultimate knowledge. What is that? Vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyah [Bg. 15.15]. Krsna says that "If you are actually studying Vedanta, then ultimately you have to understand Me." Vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyo vedanta-krd veda-vid eva caham: "I am the compiler of Vedanta, and I understand. I am the knower of Vedanta." So if you hear from Krsna what is Krsna, that is actually understanding Vedanta. If you do not understand Krsna and if you simply advertise yourself Vedanti, that will not help you.

Therefore, without this knowledge, there is... They have been called in the Bhagavad-gita as mudhah. Mudho 'yam nabhijanati, mohitam [Bg. 7.25].

tribhir gunamayair bhavair
ebhih sarvam idam jagat
mohitam nabhijanati
mam ebhyah param avyayam
 [Bg. 7.13]

The mudhas, they do not know it. So anyone who is in this material world, more or less, we are all mudhas. This morning I was walking while walking on the beach. More or less, we are all mudhas. Without being mudhah, nobody comes here in this material world. Beginning from Brahma down to the small ant, we are all mudhas of different degrees. So in order to become really learned, not to remain mudha, we have to associate with devotee. Satam prasangan mama virya-samvidah. Then it will be relishable. Relishable. Satam prasangan mama virya-samvidah. When it is relishable... Actually, when you take some foodstuff, if it is relishable, it gives you contentment, "Oh, very nice food." So bhavanti hrt: "It is pleasing to the heart." "Oh, such a nice food." And pleasing to the tongue. Similarly, when krsna-katha is discussed amongst the devotees, it is pleasing to the heart and pleasing to the ear. Unless you taste, relish something through the ear and through the heart, how you can steadily follow krsna-katha? So that requires little training. And that training is given by the devotees, by their practical life, by their daily behavior, their routine work. If we follow, taj-josanat... Josanat means to practice, is it not? What is given, josanat? Cultivation, yes. Cultivation means practice. Practice.

So the acaryas and the devotee, big, big devotees, they have given the routine work for cultivation. Just like we have got this Nectar of Devotion, how to cultivate devotional life. It is being very well received in European, American universities. In some of the universities they have made our Nectar of Devotion as textbook, "The Science of Bhakti." So there is everything. If we want to cultivate bhakti, it is not sentiment. Sentiment, of course, that may remain for some time. But it is a great science. We have to learn it scientifically. That is The Nectar of Devotion, the science of devotional life. So those who are interested, they may kindly read this book, Nectar of Devotion, cultivation. Taj-josanat. And practical cultivation -- if you live with the devotees, in the association, then there will be practical cultivation: to rise early in the morning, to offer mangala-aratrika to the Deity, then study some Vedic literature, then take prasadam, then do this, do that. They go for preaching. Actually, this Krsna consciousness movement, practically showing how to cultivate the devotional life, taj-josanat. And if we do so, then asu. Asu means very soon, without delay, even in this life. Even in this life, not that we have to wait for another life. If we practice devotional service in this life, even for few days, still, it will be a permanent asset.

Tyaktva sva-dharmam caranambujam harer bhajann apakvo 'tha patet tato yadi [SB 1.5.17]. If one takes to devotional service, tyaktva sva-dharmam, giving up his routine duty... Sva-dharma means the brahmana, ksatriya, vaisya, sudra. They have got the all..., or brahmacari, grhastha, vanaprastha. They have got their particular duties. But nobody is following any duty. They are creating their own duty. So anyway, somehow or other, if one takes to Krsna consciousness, tyaktva sva-dharmam caranambujam hareh, and practices for some time regularly, then again, due to bad association or by something, he falls down, so sastra says that "What is the loss? There is no loss. On the other hand, if a person is executing his occupational duties very nicely, but he does not know what is Krsna conscious, then what is the gain? There is no gain." No gain. Even if you become very pious by acting as a strict brahmana or a sannyasi, but if you do not understand what is Krsna, then there is no gain. It is simply waste of time.

dharmah svanusthitah pumsam
visvaksena-kathasu yah
notpadayed yadi ratim
srama eva hi kevalam
 [SB 1.2.8]

This is the verdict of Vyasadeva. Srama eva hi kevalam. You are very nice, executing your occupational duties. Dharmah svanusthitah. Svanusthitah. You are brahmana. That's nice. You are executing the brahmana's duties very nicely, or a ksatriya, or a vaisya, or a medical man, engineer, whatever you may be. That's all right. Dharmah svanusthitah pumsam visvaksena-kathasu yah. But if, by executing your professional or occupational duties, you do not develop Krsna consciousness... That is the main business of human life, Krsna consciousness. So then dharmah svanusthitah pumsam visvaksena-katha... [SB 1.2.8]. Visvaksena-katha means krsna-katha. Notpadayed yadi ratim. If you do not become inclined, sraddha, this sraddha of krsna-katha, then whatever you are doing -- simply wasting your time, and it is a labor of love only, that's all. Srama eva hi kevalam. And a devotee, even if he falls down by chance... There is every possibility of falling down because maya is very strong. And it is a fight against maya. Daivi hy esa gunamayi mama maya duratyaya [Bg. 7.14]. Duratyaya. Maya is very strong. We are getting experience. Some of them are falling down. But still, whatever he has done sincerely, that is a permanent credit of his account.

That is confirmed in the Bhagavad-gita, that yoga-bhrastah. Bhrasta means falls down, fallen down. So he has got the asset. Therefore he's not going to the other species of life. He's getting again a human form of life. That is a great profit, because we have to change our body. Tatha dehantara-praptih [Bg. 2.13]. And that... We do not know. Krsna does not say what kind of body, but there are so many, 8,400,000. Any one of them can happen. But a devotee who has fallen down, he is guaranteed again human life. And what kind of human life? Sucinam srimatam gehe yoga-bhrasto 'bhijayate [Bg. 6.41]. He'll get a life, human being, in a very rich family or in a very pious family. Those who are more advanced, they will get their next birth in a pious brahmana family, very pure brahmana family or Vaisnava family. That is called sucinam. And srimatam. Sri means wealth or beauty. Very rich family, beautiful body he will get. So those who have got their birth in high-class brahmana Vaisnava family and those who have got their birth in rich very aristocratic family, they should consider that "This advantage is given to me by Krsna. Because in my last life I could not finish my business of bhakti-yoga, now I have got it." Therefore I said to the Americans that "You have got wealth; you have got education; you have got beauty. This is the asset of your pious life. Now you utilize it for Krsna consciousness. Then your life is perfect." So not only in America, everywhere, it is not easy that one man is born immediately very rich and one man is born in very poor family or very ugly family. There is distinction. There is some superior authority. It is not accident. Karmana daiva-netrena jantur dehopapattaye [SB 3.31.1]. A living entity gets his body by superior administration, by nature's quality. There is big science.

So if you become Krsna conscious, then your life is secure, guaranteed. If you make complete the Krsna conscious life in this life, then tyaktva deham punar janma naiti mam eti [Bg. 4.9]. That is wanted. But don't be neglectful. Those who have taken to Krsna consciousness, they should be very serious. Why should you take another chance of getting birth in a very rich family or a brahmana family? That is also risky because it is not guarantee. Because generally, those who are rich, they don't care for Krsna consciousness. "Oh, this Krsna consciousness is meant for the poor fellow." Or if somebody is born in a brahmana family, he is also puffed up. He is thinking, "Oh, these are mlecchas, yavanas, Americans. Oh, I am brahmana. I am born in a very high family." That is a cause of falldown, yes, proud, pride, unnecessary pride. A Vaisnava is very humble. Trnad api sunicena taror api sahisnuna amanina manadena. We have already discussed. Titiksavah karunikah suhrdah sarva-dehinam [SB 3.25.21].

So these are the chance, human being, and there is Krsna consciousness movement, there is Krsna, Krsna is advising personally -- so many opportunities offered by this Krsna consciousness movement. Why don't you take it? If you don't take it, then you are committing suicide.

Thank you very much. Hare Krsna. (end)
>>> Ref. VedaBase => Srimad-Bhagavatam 3.25.25 --  Bombay, November 25, 1974
© 2001 The Bhaktivedanta Book Trust International.

US Prison Population: The Largest in the World

The United States incarcerates more people than any other country in the world—more even than China or Russia. Prof. Daniel J. D'Amico explains that as of 2010 more than 1.6 million people were serving jail sentences in America. Professor D'Amico suggests that "prisons are not what we think about when we think of America, and they shouldn't have to be." According to D'Amico, a free country should not have 1.6 million people in prison, and a fiscally responsible country cannot afford to. As Prof. D'Amico points out, it is time for Americans to recognize that the U.S. criminal justice system is desperately in need of reform.

Learn More:

1. "The Caging of America" [article]: Wide ranging New Yorker piece, discusses history, ethics, everyday prisoner experience. Explores a few theories as to why our prison system is the way it is.

2. "The Business Ethics of Incarceration: The Moral Implications of Treating Prisons Like Businesses" [scholarly article]: Professor D'Amico addresses the economics and morality of prison and prison privatization.

3. "U.S. prison population dwarfs that of other nations" [article]: New York Times article focusing on America's disproportionate prison population.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

India’s gravity field is unique-Physics Proof

India’s gravity field is unique-Physics Proof

Europe launched a special satellite called Gravity field and steady state ocean circulation explorer ( Goce) in 2009 .The satellite contained very sensitive instruments for measuring the subtle gravitational force in various parts of the world. The results were presented two days ago at the Earth symposium in Norway and the results are simply stunning.
India is different from rest of the world and shares a very intense gravity field. The ancients always called India ” Karma Bhoomi ” and America was called ” Bhoga Bhoomi “. Now this is the final proof for that statement. It is said any religious ceremony done in the Usa is not of much use due to it being a Bhoga bhoomi and any activity done in India yields multifold results . Also gravity is an important factor that is considered in Agama sastra for proper construction of Temples.Also the western countries will work well for a person who has an exalted sun in one’s horoscope , their fame will be found in those countries. Vedic astrology does a good job of predicting which country would suit oneself in the pursuit of a career. For spiritual purposes nothing beats the Indian soil for any kind of sadhana.
Notice only India has a very different gravity field
It is one of the most exquisite views we have ever had of the Earth.
This colourful new map traces the subtle but all pervasive influence the pull of gravity has across the globe.
Known as a geoid, it essentially defines where the level surface is on our planet; it tells us which way is “up” and which way is “down”.
It is drawn from delicate measurements made by Europe’s Goce satellite, which flies so low it comes perilously close to falling out of the sky.
Scientists say the data gathered by the spacecraft will have numerous applications.
One key beneficiary will be climate studies because the geoid can help researchers understand better how the great mass of ocean water is moving heat around the world.
The new map was presented here in Norway’s second city at a special Earth observation (EO) symposium dedicated to the data being acquired by Goce and other European Space Agency (Esa) missions.
Europe is currently in the midst of a huge programme of EO development which will see it launch some 20 missions worth nearly eight billion euros before the decade’s end.
The Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer (Goce) is at the front of this armada of scientific and environmental monitoring spacecraft.
Imaginary ball
Launched in 2009, the sleek satellite flies pole to pole at an altitude of just 254.9km – the lowest orbit of any research satellite in operation today.
The spacecraft carries three pairs of precision-built platinum blocks inside its gradiometer instrument that sense accelerations which are as small as 1 part in 10,000,000,000,000 of the gravity experienced on Earth.
This has allowed it to map the almost imperceptible differences in the pull exerted by the mass of the planet from one place to the next – from the great mountain ranges to the deepest ocean trenches.
Two months of observations have now been fashioned into what scientists call the geoid.
“I think everyone knows what a level is in relation to construction work, and a geoid is nothing but a level that extends over the entire Earth,” explained Professor Reiner Rummel, the chairman of the Goce scientific consortium.
“So with the geoid, I can take two arbitrary points on the globe and decide which one is ‘up’ and which one is ‘down’,” the Technische Universitaet Muenchen researcher told BBC News.
In other words, the map on this page defines the horizontal – a surface on which, at any point, the pull of gravity is perpendicular to it.
Put a ball on this hypothetical surface and it will not roll – even though it appears to have “slopes”. These slopes can be seen in the colours which mark how the global level diverges from the generalised (an ellipsoid) shape of the Earth.
In the North Atlantic, around Iceland, the level sits about 80m above the surface of the ellipsoid; in the Indian Ocean it sits about 100m below.
The geoid is of paramount interest to oceanographers because it is the shape the world’s seas would adopt if there were no tides, no winds and no currents.
If researchers then subtract the geoid from the actual observed behaviour of the oceans, the scale of these other influences becomes apparent.
This is information critical to climate modellers who try to represent the way the oceans manage the transfer of energy around the planet.
But a geoid has many other uses, too. Having a global level underpins a universal system to compare heights anywhere on Earth.
In construction, for example, it tells engineers which way a fluid would naturally want to flow through a pipeline.
Geophysicists will also want to use the Goce data to try to probe what’s happening deep within the Earth, especially in those places that are prone to quakes and volcanic eruptions.
“The Goce data is showing up new information in the Himalayas, central Africa, and the Andes, and in Antarctica,” explained Dr Rune Floberghagen, Esa’s Goce mission manager.
“This is, in one sense, not so surprising. These are places that are fairly inaccessible. It is not easy to measure high frequency variations in the gravity field in Antarctica with an aeroplane because there are so few airfields from which to operate.”
Goce’s extremely low operating altitude was expected to limit its mission to a couple of years at most. But Esa now thinks it may be able to continue flying the satellite until perhaps 2014.
Unusually quiet solar activity has produced very calm atmospheric conditions, meaning Goce has used far less xenon “fuel” in its ion engine to maintain its orbit.
Ultimately, though, that fuel will run out and the residual air molecules at 255km will slow the satellite, forcing it from the sky.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

US military developing insect surveillance drones

US military developing insect surveillance drones
File photo shows an insect-sized spy drone.
File photo shows an insect-sized spy drone.
Sat Jul 28, 2012 4:58PM GMT
Reports indicate the US military has poured huge sums of money into surveillance drone miniaturization and is developing micro aircraft which now come in a swarm of bug-sized flying spies.

According to various internet sources, a team of researchers at the Johns Hopkins University in conjunction with the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Arlington, Virginia, is helping develop what they are calling a micro aerial vehicle (MAV) that will undertake various espionage tasks.

The robotic insect can effortlessly infiltrate urban areas, where dense concentrations of buildings and people, along with unpredictable winds and other obstacles make it impractical.

It can be controlled from a great distance and is equipped with a camera and a built-in microphone.

The new device has the capability to land precisely on human skin, use its super-micron sized needle to take DNA samples and fly off again at speed. All people feel is the pain of a mosquito bite without the burning sensation and the swelling of course.

The hard-to-detect surveillance drone can also inject a micro radio frequency identification (RFID) tracking device right under skin, and can be used to inject toxins into enemies during wars.

As early as in 2007, the US government was accused of secretly developing robotic insect spies when anti-war protesters in the United States saw some flying objects similar to dragonflies or little helicopters hovering above them.

The US is not alone in miniaturizing drones that imitate nature: France, the Netherlands and Israel are also developing similar devices.

France has developed flapping wing bio-inspired micro drones. The Netherlands BioMAV (Biologically Inspired AI for Micro Aerial Vehicles) has also built Parrot AR drones.

Meanwhile, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has produced a butterfly-shaped drone, weighing just 20 grams, which can gather intelligence inside buildings.

The insect drone, with its 0.15-gram camera and memory card, is managed remotely with a special helmet. Putting on the helmet, the operator finds themselves in the “butterfly’s cockpit” and virtually sees what the butterfly sees in real time.


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Irish Slave Trade – The Forgotten “White” Slaves

The Slaves That Time Forgot

Global Research, May 28, 2012 - 2008-04-14

They came as slaves; vast human cargo transported on tall British ships bound for the Americas. They were shipped by the hundreds of thousands and included men, women, and even the youngest of children.
Whenever they rebelled or even disobeyed an order, they were punished in the harshest ways. Slave owners would hang their human property by their hands and set their hands or feet on fire as one form of punishment. They were burned alive and had their heads placed on pikes in the marketplace as a warning to other captives.
We don’t really need to go through all of the gory details, do we? After all, we know all too well the atrocities of the African slave trade. But, are we talking about African slavery? King James II and Charles I led a continued effort to enslave the Irish. Britain’s famed Oliver Cromwell furthered this practice of dehumanizing one’s next door neighbor.
The Irish slave trade began when James II sold 30,000 Irish prisoners as slaves to the New World. His Proclamation of 1625 required Irish political prisoners be sent overseas and sold to English settlers in the West Indies. By the mid 1600s, the Irish were the main slaves sold to Antigua and Montserrat. At that time, 70% of the total population of Montserrat were Irish slaves.
Ireland quickly became the biggest source of human livestock for English merchants. The majority of the early slaves to the New World were actually white.
From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade. Families were ripped apart as the British did not allow Irish dads to take their wives and children with them across the Atlantic. This led to a helpless population of homeless women and children. Britain’s solution was to auction them off as well.
During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children between the ages of 10 and 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia. Another 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidder. In 1656, Cromwell ordered that 2000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers.
Many people today will avoid calling the Irish slaves what they truly were: Slaves. They’ll come up with terms like “Indentured Servants” to describe what occurred to the Irish. However, in most cases from the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle.
As an example, the African slave trade was just beginning during this same period. It is well recorded that African slaves, not tainted with the stain of the hated Catholic theology and more expensive to purchase, were often treated far better than their Irish counterparts.
African slaves were very expensive during the late 1600s (50 Sterling). Irish slaves came cheap (no more than 5 Sterling). If a planter whipped or branded or beat an Irish slave to death, it was never a crime. A death was a monetary setback, but far cheaper than killing a more expensive African. The English masters quickly began breeding the Irish women for both their own personal pleasure and for greater profit. Children of slaves were themselves slaves, which increased the size of the master’s free workforce. Even if an Irish woman somehow obtained her freedom, her kids would remain slaves of her master. Thus, Irish moms, even with this new found emancipation, would seldom abandon their kids and would remain in servitude.
In time, the English thought of a better way to use these women (in many cases, girls as young as 12) to increase their market share: The settlers began to breed Irish women and girls with African men to produce slaves with a distinct complexion. These new “mulatto” slaves brought a higher price than Irish livestock and, likewise, enabled the settlers to save money rather than purchase new African slaves. This practice of interbreeding Irish females with African men went on for several decades and was so widespread that, in 1681, legislation was passed “forbidding the practice of mating Irish slave women to African slave men for the purpose of producing slaves for sale.” In short, it was stopped only because it interfered with the profits of a large slave transport company.
England continued to ship tens of thousands of Irish slaves for more than a century. Records state that, after the 1798 Irish Rebellion, thousands of Irish slaves were sold to both America and Australia. There were horrible abuses of both African and Irish captives. One British ship even dumped 1,302 slaves into the Atlantic Ocean so that the crew would have plenty of food to eat.
There is little question that the Irish experienced the horrors of slavery as much (if not more in the 17th Century) as the Africans did. There is, also, very little question that those brown, tanned faces you witness in your travels to the West Indies are very likely a combination of African and Irish ancestry. In 1839, Britain finally decided on it’s own to end it’s participation in Satan’s highway to hell and stopped transporting slaves. While their decision did not stop pirates from doing what they desired, the new law slowly concluded THIS chapter of nightmarish Irish misery.
But, if anyone, black or white, believes that slavery was only an African experience, then they’ve got it completely wrong.
Irish slavery is a subject worth remembering, not erasing from our memories.

But, where are our public (and PRIVATE) schools???? Where are the history books? Why is it so seldom discussed?

Do the memories of hundreds of thousands of Irish victims merit more than a mention from an unknown writer?

Or is their story to be one that their English pirates intended: To (unlike the African book) have the Irish story utterly and completely disappear as if it never happened.
None of the Irish victims ever made it back to their homeland to describe their ordeal. These are the lost slaves; the ones that time and biased history books conveniently forgot.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Do You Own Your Children?

Do You Own Your Children?

This is a very important article with much legal precedent to back it up. Please check it out.

Dude, That Isn’t Wax On Your Apple!

Dude, That Isn’t Wax On Your Apple!

Fancy yourself a vegetarian or vegan?
Think that the label that says “organically grown” has anything to do with the packaging, storage, and transport of that product to stores?
What if I told you that cow, pig, and chicken collagen is now used in place of wax on your fruits and vegetables, among many other  things much worse than you can probably imagine?
And what if then I told you, as with most atrocities that happen now-a-days, that this is all approved by the FDA…
Since the early 12th century, there has been a tradition of applying wax onto the skins of fruits and vegetables for longer storage life. Today, that tradition is being carried on with a whole new generation of chemicals and compounds that are genetically designed to accomplish the same goal. But in these modern times, the health and well-being of the consumer of that apple is not necessarily the goal of this unnatural, inorganic process.
Bottom line… your produce is being dipped and sprayed with an experimental host of holy horrors in the name of “food safety” and longer shelf-life. Prepare yourself to be shocked and amazed that our Federal agency that is designed to protect us, the Food and Drug Administration, is allowing these dangerous and unhealthy practices to be perpetrated on an unwitting public, all in the name of profits.
This video was recently posted to Youtube, showing a woman peeling off of her freshly bought supermarket romaine lettuce what appears to be a plastic coating, similar to the type one would peal off of the screen of a new electronic gadget. She has no idea what she has discovered…

Now, while this seems to be an almost incredible and hard to believe hoax, the truth is even stranger. Please read on…
For those of you that know of my writing, you know that I like to get right down to the nitty-gritty… the primary source. And so we will go right to what the FDA has to say about what this strange plastic-like substance is, and whether or not it approves of such food handling practices (which it does).
Here is the link for the FDA’s website, entitled:
“Chapter VI. Microbiological Safety of Controlled and Modified Atmosphere Packaging of Fresh and Fresh-Cut Produce – Analysis and Evaluation of Preventive Control Measures for the Control and Reduction/Elimination of Microbial Hazards on Fresh and Fresh-Cut Produce”.
Wow! That sounds so wonderfully official and scientific, doesn’t it?
So what are these “preventative control measures” as referred to in this report?
Well, for our purposes, since these measures are actually edible, let’s explore what the FDA approves for our fruits and vegetables to be dipped in and sprayed with for our own “safety”…
The report states:
This chapter addresses the use of modified atmosphere packaging and controlled atmosphere packaging for the preservation of fresh produce. There have been great technological advances in this area of preservation, particularly as it refers to improving the quality and shelf-stability of highly perishable food products, such as produce. However, when using these technologies, careful attention must be paid to the effect on the survival and growth of pathogenic organisms. This chapter focuses on food safety aspects of packaging technologies that are either commercially available or under investigation…
Over the past 20 years, there has been an enormous increase in the demand for fresh fruit and vegetable products that has required the industry to develop new and improved methods for maintaining food quality and extending shelf life…
One of the areas of research that has shown promise, and had success, is that of modified atmosphere packaging (MAP). This technique involves either actively or passively controlling or modifying the atmosphere surrounding the product within a package made of various types and/or combinations of films. In North America, one of the first applications of this technology for fresh-cut produce was introduced by McDonald’s (Brody 1995), which used MAP of lettuce in bulk-sized packages to distribute the product to retail outlets…
A modified atmosphere can be defined as one that is created by altering the normal composition of air (78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen, 0.03% carbon dioxide and traces of noble gases) to provide an optimum atmosphere for increasing the storage length and quality of food/produce (Moleyar and Narasimham 1994; Phillips 1996). This can be achieved by using controlled atmosphere storage (CAS) and/or active or passive modified atmosphere packaging (MAP).
The numerous film types used in MAP are listed in Table VI-2 (see below), and some commercially available MAP systems are listed in Table VI-3. Oxygen, CO2, and N2, are most often used in MAP/CAS (Parry 1993; Phillips 1996). Other gases such as nitrous and nitric oxides, sulphur dioxide, ethylene, chlorine (Phillips 1996), as well as ozone and propylene oxide (Parry 1993) have been suggested and investigated experimentally.
So was that plastic looking film being peeled off of that supermarket lettuce above actually one of many forms of modified atmosphere packaging? Was it dipped in or sprayed by a “MAP” chemical compound for “food safety”?
Lets read further into this FDA report…

1.3. Films used in MAP

Edible biodegradable coatings are yet another variant of the smart film technology, where a film is used as a coating and applied directly on the food…
The use of MAP for whole and fresh-cut produce involves careful selection of the film and package type for each specific product and package size . Effective MAP of produce requires consideration of the optimal gas concentration, product respiration rate, gas diffusion through the film, as well as the optimal storage temperature in order to achieve the most benefit for the product and consumer. In addition, when selecting an appropriate film, one has to take into account the protection provided, as well as the strength, sealability and clarity, machineability, ability to label, and the gas gradient formed by the closed film (Zagory 1995).
Recently, the long list of films and commercially available MAP systems has been augmented with the conception of both smart and edible packaging systems (Guilbert and others 1996; Phillips 1996). “Smart” or “intelligent” packaging is being used in the fresh-cut industry and includes indicators of time and temperature, gas composition, seal leakage, and food safety and quality (Rooney 2000). Some intelligent systems alter package oxygen and /or carbon dioxide permeability by sensing and responding to changes in temperature. Other smart films incorporate chemicals into packets placed in the packaging system, with no contact with the product; an example would be the use of O2 scavengers with O2 indicators. Another type of smart film, developed with food safety in mind, is currently undergoing testing. This novel system, when incorporated into a packaging film, uses an antibody detection system to detect pathogens, and expresses a positive finding as a symbol on the surface of the package, thereby alerting food handlers to the presence of pathogens. Although this technology shows promise, it is still in its infancy and comprehensive assessments have yet to be performed. Several limitations have been suggested with this technology; for example, it would not likely be able to detect pathogens at concentrations below 104 CFU/g or cm2 and would not detect pathogens within the product.
Edible biodegradable coatings are yet another variant of the smart film technology, where a film is used as a coating and applied directly on the food (Guilbert and others 1996; Francis and others 1999). Wax has been used in China since the 12th and 13th centuries as an edible coating to retard desiccation of citrus fruits, and in the last 30 years, edible films and coatings made from a variety of compounds have been reported. Guilbert and others (1996) and Baldwin (1994) have extensively reviewed some of the newer edible films (see Tables VI-3 and VI-5). These films are gaining popularity due to both environmental pollution and food safety concerns (Padgett and others 1998). However, a number of problems have also been associated with edible coatings. For example, modification of the internal gas composition of the product due to high CO2 and low O2 can cause problems such as anaerobic fermentation of apples and bananas, rapid weight loss of tomatoes, elevated levels of core flush for apples, rapid decay in cucumbers, and so on (Park and others 1994).
Edible films may consist of four basic materials: lipids, resins, polysaccharides and proteins (Baldwin and others 1995). Plasticizers such as glycerol as well as cross-linking agents, antimicrobials, antioxidants, and texture agents can be added to customize the film for a specific use (Guilbert and others 1996). Plasticizers have the specific effect of increasing water vapor permeability. Therefore, their addition must be considered when calculating the desired water vapor properties of each specific film, since too much moisture can create ideal growth conditions for some foodborne pathogens. The most common plasticizer used to cast edible films is food-grade polyethylene glycol, which is used to reduce film brittleness (Koelsch 1994).
What is polyethylene glycol?
Link – – which causes nephrotoxicity (renal problems)
What is a plasticizer?
Plasticizers (UK = plasticisers) or dispersants are additives that increase the plasticity or fluidity of a material. The dominant applications are for plastics, especially polyvinyl chloride (PVC). The properties other materials are also improved when blended plasticizers including concrete, clays, and related products. The worldwide market for plasticizers in 2000 was estimated to be several million tons per year.
Plasticizers work by embedding themselves between the chains of polymers, spacing them apart (increasing the “free volume”), and thus significantly lowering the glass transition temperature for the plastic and making it softer. For plastics such as PVC, the more plasticizer added, the lower its cold flex temperature will be. This means that it will be more flexible and its durability will increase as a result of it. Some plasticizers evaporate and tend to concentrate in an enclosed space; the “new car smell” is caused mostly by plasticizers evaporating from the car interior.
Plasticizers make it possible to achieve improved compound processing characteristics, while also providing flexibility in the end-use product… Plasticizers also function as softeners, extenders, and lubricants, and play a significant role in rubber manufacturing.
Other uses include:
  • Phthalate-based plasticizers are used in situations where good resistance to water and oils is required. Some common phthalate plasticizers are:
    • Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), used in construction materials and medical devices
    • Diisononyl phthalate (DINP), found in garden hoses, shoes, toys, and building materials
    • Bis(n-butyl)phthalate (DnBP, DBP), used for cellulose plastics, food wraps, adhesives, perfumes, and cosmetics – about a third of nail polishes, glosses, enamels, and hardeners contain it, together with some shampoos, sunscreens, skin emollients, and insect repellents
    • Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBzP) is found in vinyl tiles, traffic cones, food conveyor belts, artificial leather, and plastic foams
    • Diisodecyl phthalate (DIDP), used for insulation of wires and cables, car undercoating, shoes, carpets, pool liners
    • Di-n-octyl phthalate (DOP or DnOP), used in flooring materials, carpets, notebook covers, and high explosives, such as Semtex (plastic explosive). Together with DEHP it was the most common plasticizers, but now is suspected of causing cancer
    • Diisooctyl phthalate (DIOP), all-purpose plasticizer for polyvinyl chloride, polyvinyl acetate, rubbers, cellulose plastics, and polyurethane.
    • Diethyl phthalate (DEP)
    • Diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP)
    • Di-n-hexyl phthalate, used in flooring materials, tool handles, and automobile parts
    • and on and on…
Lipids, or waxes and oils, and resins such as shellac and wood rosin have been widely used for intact fruits and vegetables in two distinct forms, laminates and emulsions (Baldwin and others 1995). Lipid-based edible barriers are known for their low water vapor permeabilities. Koelsch (1994) found that the water vapor permeability of a cellulose-based emulsion barrier is dependent on the lipid moiety used; a minimum permeability can be achieved when stearic acid is used as the lipid. This is due to the effective barrier formed by stearic acid through an interlocking network. However, lipid-based edible films also require a support matrix to reduce brittleness, and have difficulty adhering to the hydrophilic cut surfaces of fruits and vegetables (Koelsch 1994; Baldwin and others 1995). Some of the most common compounds used for support matrices are modified celluloses of hydroxypropylmethyl, ethyl and methylcellulose, chitosan and whey protein isolate (WPI; Koelsch 1994).
*** Authors note: Steric acid is also known as tallow (animal and plant fatty acids used in the production of soap).
In general, polysaccharides such as cellulose, pectin, starch, carrageenan, and chitosan, can adhere to cut surfaces of produce and effectively allow gas transfer; however, they are not effective moisture barriers. Due to their CO2 and O2 permeabilities, polysaccharide-based films allow the creation of desirable modified atmospheres, an attractive advantage over plastic or shrink wrap MAP which can be labor intensive, expensive and environmentally harmful (Baldwin and others 1995). A number of cellulose derived coatings are available commercially, most taking advantage of the modified atmosphere effect of the barriers. Pro-long (Courtaulds Group, London) and Semperfresh (Surface Systems International, Ltd., Oxfordshire, U.K.) are examples of water-soluble composite coatings comprised of the sodium salt of carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) and sucrose fatty acid ester emulsifiers (Baldwin and others 1995). Their properties are discussed in Table VI-6. A newer product called “Snow-White,” based on sucrose esters of fatty acids, has also been used to combat oxidative browning in the potato industry. Nature-Seal is a polysaccharide-based surface treatment that uses cellulose derivatives as film formers, but unlike Semperfresh and Pro-long, does not contain sucrose fatty acid esters. Nature-Seal is a browning inhibitor that is applied as a dip or spray and has been shown to delay ripening of whole fruits and vegetables, and to retard discoloration of peeled carrots and cut mushrooms.
*** Authors note: Sucrose is the organic compound commonly known as table sugar and sometimes called saccharose. This is the kind of processed sugar many health conscious people avoid, and which diabetics aren’t supposed to consume, though the natural sugars in fresh fruit is acceptable for diabetics. This is a blatantly deceiving practice.
Finally, proteins such as casein, soy, and zein, can also adhere to hydrophilic cut produce surfaces and are easily modified to form films; however, they also allow water diffusion (Baldwin and others 1995). Unlike lipid-based barriers, protein-based barriers do not require the addition of a support matrix, since the protein acts as both the water vapor barrier and structural component of the film (Koelsch 1994). Park and others (1994) reported the successful application of a corn-zein film to extend the shelf life of tomatoes. Color change, loss of firmness, and weight loss during storage were delayed, and shelf life was extended by 6 d in comparison to untreated tomatoes. The corn-zein product used in the above study was a commercial product that was brushed onto the tomatoes (Regular Grade F4000, INC Biomedicals, Inc.), and consisted of 54 g of corn-zein, 14 g of glycerine, and 1 g of citric acid dissolved in 260 g of ethanol. Park and others (1994) did not comment on the use of citric acid in the film solution; however, others have found that edible films composed of zein were more successful in preventing the rancidity of nuts when citric acid was added (Guilbert and others 1996).
*** Author’s note: Ethanol, also called ethyl alcohol, pure alcohol, grain alcohol, or drinking alcohol, is a volitile, flammable, colorless liquid. It is a psychoactive drug and one of the oldest recreational drugs. Best known as the type of alcohol found in alcoholic beverages, it is also used in thermometers, as a solvent, and as a fuel. In common usage, it is often referred to simply as alcohol or spirits.
In order to obtain an edible film that incorporates all the best qualities of these four basic materials, as well as fulfilling the specific conditions for each fruit or vegetable, manufacturers are now producing films comprised of different combinations. Some of the advantages and disadvantages of the four basic edible film barriers, as well as combinations thereof, are listed in Table VI-5 (discussed below).
Here is Table VI-3:
“Commercially available modified atmosphere packaging systems for small and large quantities of produce”
Edible Films1
TAL Pro-Long (Courtaulds Group) Blend of sucrose esters of fatty acids and sodium carboxymethylcellulose; depresses internal O2 and is edible. Pears
Nutri-Save N, O-carboxymethychitosan edible film. Pears, apples
Semperfresh, Nu-Coat Fo, Ban-seel, Brilloshine, Snow-White and White Wash products (Surface Systems Intl. Ltd.) Sucrose ester based fruit coatings with sodium carboxymethyl cellulose products manufactured exclusively from food ingredients available in dip or spray. Most fruits and vegetables, processed and whole potatoes (Snow-White and White-Wash)
PacRite products (American Machinery Corp.) Variety of products, water-based carnauba-shellac emulsions, shellac and resin water emulsions, water-based mineral oil fatty acid emulsions, and so forth. Apples, citrus, tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers, squash, peaches, plums, nectarines
Fresh-Cote product line (Agri-Tech Inc.) Variety of products including; shellac-based, carnauba-based and oil emulsion edible films. Apples, pears, eggplant, tomatoes, cucumbers, stone fruits
Vector 7, Apl-Brite 300C, Citrus-Brite 300C (Solutec Corp.) Vector 7 is a shellac-based film with morpholine; the Apl-Brite and Citrus-Brite are carnuba-based films. Apples and citrus fruits
Primafresh Wax (S.C. Johnson) Carnauba-based wax emulsion. Apples, citrus and other firm-surfaced fruit
Shield-Brite products (Pace Intl. Shield-Brite) Shellac, carnauba, natural wax and vegetable oil/wax and xanthan gum products. Citrus, pears, stone fruit
Sta-Fresh Products (Food Machinery Corp.) Natural, synthetic, and modified natural resin products and combinations thereof. Citrus, apples, stone fruits, pomegranates, tomatoes, pineapple, cantaloupes, and sweet potatoes
Fresh Wax products (Fresh Mark Corp.) Shellac and wood resin, oxidized polyethylene wax, white oil/paraffin wax products. Citrus, cantaloupes, pineapples, apples, sweet potatoes, cucumbers, tomatoes and other vegetables
Brogdex Co. products Carnauba wax emulsions with or without fungicides, emulsion wax, high shine wax, water-based emulsion wax, carnauba-based emulsion, vegetable oil, resin-based and concentrated polyethylene emulsion wax products. Apples, melons, bananas, avocado, chayote, papaya, mango, pineapple, citrus, stone fruits.
FreshSealTM (Planet Polymer Technologies Inc. has licensed CPG Technologies of Agway, Inc. to produce) A patented coating that slows the ripening process by controlling the O2 and CO2 and water vapor flowing in and out of the product. It can be tailored to the individual respiration rates of different fruit and vegetable varieties. Currently available for avocado, cantaloupe, mangoes and papaya. Use on limes, pineapples and bananas is currently under investigation.
Nature-SealTM , AgriCoat (Mantrose Bradshaw Zinsser Group) Composite polysaccharide-based coating using cellulose derivatives as film formers. Sliced apples, carrots, peppers, onions, lettuce, pears, avocados, sliced bananas
Intelligent Systems
Activated Earth Films Typically polyethylene bags with powdered clay material made of powdered aluminum silicates, incorporated into the film matrix. Possibly reduces ethylene concentration by facilitating its diffusion out of the bag. Variable
Temperature Responsive Films (Landec Labs) Films increase their gas permeabilities in response to temperature increases as well as increases in respiration. Stabilizes the modified atmosphere so it remains the same under various temperatures. Specific for each product
CO2 Scavengers FreshLock (Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Co.), Verifrais (Codimer Tournessi, Gujan-Mestras) Sachet type product which is placed directly in the package and absorbs both carbon dioxide and oxygen. Fruits and vegetables, coffee
Ethylene absorbents Ethysorb (StayFresh Ltd), Ageless C (Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Company), Freshkeep (Kurarey), Acepack (nippon Greener), Peakfresh (Klerk Plastic Industrie, Chantler Packaging Inc.) Sachet type product which is placed directly in the package and absorbs ethylene. They are composed of a variety of products such as aluminum oxide, potassium permanganate, activated carbon, and silicon dioxide. Fruits and vegetables
Antimicrobial Films-unsure of commercial availability
So let’s take a look at what some of these “food safety” MAP products actually are, as listed in the above table:
Shellac is a resin secreted by the female lac bug, on trees in the forests of India and Thailand. It is processed and sold as dry flakes which are dissolved in ethyl alcohol to make liquid shellac, which is used as a brush-on colorant, food glaze and wood finish. Shellac functions as a tough natural primer, sanding sealant, tannin-blocker, odour-blocker, stain, and high-gloss varnish. Shellac was once used in electrical applications as it possesses good insulation qualities and it seals out moisture. Phonograph (gramaphone) records were also made of it during the pre-1950s, 78-rpm recording era.
Shellac is one of the few historically appropriate finishes (including casein paint, spar varnishes, boiled linseed oil and lacquer) for early 20th-century hardwood floors, and wooden wall and ceiling paneling.
From the time it replaced oil and wax finishes in the 19th century, shellac was one of the dominant wood finishes in the western world until it was replaced by nitrocellulose lacquer in the 1920s and 1930s.
Morpholine is a common additive, in parts per million concentrations, for pH adjustment in both fossil fuel and nuclear power plant steam systems. Morpholine is used because its volatility is about the same as  water, so once it is added to the water, its concentration becomes distributed rather evenly in both the water and steam phases. Its pH adjusting qualities then become distributed throughout the steam plant to provide corrosion protection. Morpholine is often used in conjunction with low concentrations of hydrazine or ammonia to provide a comprehensive all-volatile treatment chemistry for corrosion protection for the steam systems of such plants. Morpholine decomposes reasonably slowly in the absence of oxygen at the high temperatures and pressures in these steam systems.
The European Union has forbidden the use of Morpholine in fruit coating.
Morpholine is widely used in the USA, Canada, Australia and other parts of the world as a food additive for use as a component or coating for fruits and vegetables. However, the use of Morpholine is prohibited in the European Union, those countries where its use is permitted are fully aware of these restrictions. Consequently, they have strict protocols to ensure waxes containing Morpholine are not used for fruit destined for the UK and the EU.
Morpholine is not permitted in Europe because it is known to be a precursor of N-nitrosomorpholine, a carcinogen.
Carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) or cellulose gum is a synthesized cellulose derivative.
CMC is used in “food science” as a viscosity modifier or thickener, and to stabilize emulsions in various products including  ice cream.  As a food additive, it has E number E466. It is also a constituent of many non-food products, such as K-Y Jelly, toothpaste, laxatives, diet pills, water-based paints, detergents, textile sizing and various  paper products. It is used primarily because it has high viscosity, is non-toxic, and is hypoallergenic. In laundry detergents it is used as a soil suspension polymer designed to deposit onto cotton and other cellulosic fabrics creating a negatively charged barrier to soils in the wash solution. CMC is used as a lubricant in non-volitile eye-drops (artificial tears). Sometimes it is methyl cellulose (MC) which is used, but its non-polar methyl groups (-CH3) do not add any solubility or chemical reactivity to the base cellulose.
Following the initial reaction the resultant mixture produces approximately 60% CMC plus 40% salts (sodium chloride and sodium glycolate). This product is the so-called Technical CMC which is used in detergents. A further purification process is used to remove these salts to produce pure CMC which is used for food, pharmaceutical and dentifrice (toothpaste) applications. An intermediate “semi-purified” grade is also produced, typically used in paper applications.
CMC is also used in pharmaceuticals as a thickening agent. CMC is also used in the oil drilling industry as an ingredient of drilling mud, where it acts as a viscosity modifier and water retention agent. Poly-anionic cellulose or PAC is derived from CMC and is also used in oilfield practice.
Paraffin – medicinal liquid paraffin is used to aid bowel movement in persons suffering chronic constipation; it passes through the gastrointestinal tract without itself being taken into the body, but it limits the amount of water removed from the stool. In the food industry, where it may be called “wax”, it can be used as a lubricant in mechanical mixing, applied to baking tins to ensure that loaves are easily released when cooked and as a coating for fruit or other items requiring a “shiny” appearance for sale.
It is often used in infrared spectroscopy, as it has a relatively uncomplicated IR spectrum. When the sample to be tested is made into a mull (a very thick paste), liquid paraffin is added so it can be spread on the transparent (to infrared) mounting plates to be tested.
Mineral oil has also seen widespread use in biotechnology for preventing the evaporation of small volumes of liquid during heating. Polymerase chain-reaction samples may need to be overlaid with a layer of mineral oil to prevent evaporation during the high heat (95 °C) required to denature DNA.
Paraffin wax as a food grade substance is used in:
  • Shiny coating used in candy-making; although edible, it is non-digestible, passing right through the body without being broken down
  • Coating for many kinds of hard cheese, like Edam cheese
  • Sealant for jars, cans, and bottles
  • Chewing gum additive
It is also used for:
  • Candle-making
  • Coatings for waxed paper or cloth
  • Investment casting
  • Anti-caking agent, moisture repellent, and dust-binding coatings for fertilizers
  • Agent for preparation of specimens for histology
  • Bullet lubricant – with other ingredients, such as olive oil and beeswax
  • Crayons
  • Solid propellant for hybrid rocket motors
  • Component of surf-wax, used for grip on surfboards in surfing
  • Component of glide wax, used on skies and snowboards
  • Friction-reducer, for use on handrails and cement ledges, commonly used in skateboarding
  • Ink. Used as the basis for solid ink different color blocks of wax for thermal printers. The wax is melted and then sprayed on the paper producing images with a shiny surface
  • Microwax: food additive, a glazing agent with E number E905
  • Forensics aid: the nitrate test uses paraffin wax to detect nitrates and nitrites on the hand of a shooting suspect
  • Antiozonant agents: blends of paraffin and micro waxes are used in rubber compounds to prevent cracking of the rubber; the antiozonant waxes can be produced from synthetic waxes, FT wax, and Fischer Tropsch wax
  • Mechanical thermostats and actuators, as an expansion medium for activating such devices
  • “Potting” guitar pickups, which reduces microphonic feedback caused from the subtle movements of the pole pieces
  • “Potting” of local oscillator coils to prevent microphonic frequency modulation in low end FM radios.
  • Wax baths for beauty and therapy purposes
  • Thickening agent in many Paintballs, as used by Crayola
  • An effective, although comedogenic, moisturizer in toiletries and cosmetics such as Vaseline
  • Prevents oxidation on the surface of polished steel and iron
N(6)-Carboxymethyllysine (CML), also known as N(epsilon)-(carboxymethyl)lysine, is an advanced glycation endproduct (AGE). CML has been the most used marker for AGEs in food analysis.
An advanced glycation end-product (AGE) is the result of a chain of chemical reactions after an initial glycation reaction. Side products generated in intermediate steps may be oxidizing agents (such as hydrogen peroxide), or not (such as beta amyloid proteins). “Glycosylation” is sometimes used for “glycation” in the literature, usually as ‘non-enzymatic glycosylation.’
AGEs may be formed external to the body (exogenously) by heating (e.g., cooking);or inside the body (endogenously) through normal metabolism and aging. Under certain pathologic conditions (e.g., oxidative stress due to hyperglycemia in patients with diabetes), AGE formation can be increased beyond normal levels. AGEs are now known to play a role as proinflammatory mediators in gestational diabetes as well.
The formation and accumulation of advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs) has been implicated in the progression of age-related diseases. AGEs have been implicated in Alzheimer’s Disease,cardiovascular disease,and stroke.The mechanism by which AGEs induce damage is through a process called cross-linking that causes intracellular damage and apoptosis.They form photosensitizers in the crystalline lens, which has implications for cataract development.Reduced muscle function is also associated with AGEs.
AGEs may be less, or more, reactive than the initial sugars they were formed from. They are absorbed by the body during digestion with about 30% efficiency. Many cells in the body (for example, endothelial cells, smooth muscle, and cells of the immune system)from tissue such as lung, liver, kidney, and peripheral blood bear the Receptor for Advanced Glycation End-products (RAGE) that, when binding AGEs, contributes to age- and diabetes-related chronic inflammatory diseases such atherosclerosis, asthma, arthritis, myocardial infarction, nephropathy, retinopathy, periodontis, and neuropathy.. There may be some chemicals, such as aminoguanidine, that limit the formation of AGEs by reacting with 3-deoxyglucosone.
The total state of oxidative and peroxidative stress on the healthy body, and the accumulation of AGE-related damage is proportional to the dietary intake of exogenous (preformed) AGEs, the consumption of sugars with a propensity towards glycation such as fructose and galactose. (So naturally, this AGE is used to coat fructose engorged fruit!!! Real safe…)

AGEs affect nearly every type of cell and molecule in the body, and are thought to be one factor in aging and some age-related chronic diseases.They are also believed to play a causative role in the vascular complications of diabetes mellitus.
They have a range of pathological effects, including increasing vascular permeability, inhibition of vascular dilation by interfering with nitric oxide, oxidising LDL, binding cells including macrophage, endothelial, and mesangial cells to induce the secretion of a variety of cytokines and enhancing oxidative stress.
Gelatin (or gelatine) is a translucent, colorless, brittle (when dry), flavorless solid substance, derived from the collagen inside animals’ skin and bones. It is commonly used as a gelling agent in food, pharmaceuticals, photography, and cosmetic manufacturing. Substances containing gelatin or functioning in a similar way are called gelatinous. Gelatin is an irreversibly hydrolyzed form of collagen, and is classified as a foodstuff and therefore carries no E Number. It is found in some gummy candies as well as other products such as marshmallows, gelatin dessert, and some low-fat yogurt. Household gelatin comes in the form of sheets, granules, or powder. Instant types can be added to the food as they are; others need to be soaked in water beforehand.
Gelatin is a mixture of peptides and proteins produced by partial hydrolysis of collagen extracted from the boiled crushed bones, connective tissues, organs and some intestines of animals such as domesticated cattle, chicken, and pigs. The natural molecular bonds between individual collagen strands are broken down into a form that rearranges more easily. Gelatin melts to a liquid when heated and solidifies when cooled again. Together with water, it forms a semi-solid colloid gel.
The worldwide production amount of gelatin is about 300,000 tons per year (roughly 600 million lb).On a commercial scale, gelatin is made from by-products of the meat and leather industry.Gelatin is derived mainly from pork skins, pork and cattle bones, or split cattle hides; contrary to popular belief, horns and hooves are not used.The raw materials are prepared by different curing, acid, and alkali processes which are employed to extract the dried collagen hydrolysate. These processesmay take up to several weeks, and differences in such processes have great effects on the properties of the final gelatin products.
Authors note… And so the practical joke of the century from the villainous FDA? Vegetarians and vegans have all this time been eating organic fruit and veggies covered in pig, beef, and chicken byproducts. Oh, they must get a kick out of themselves!
Could this food safety practice actually be causing harm and promoting disease and harmful pathogens?
Oh, most certainly, according to the FDA report.
In fact, it after reading this report, I am very suspicious that the recent outbreaks of food-borne illness caused from produce may X have ironically been caused by this scientific process of food safety.
Remember the great spinach scare of the 2006, when almost all prepackaged washed and ready to eat spinich was recalled due to  the strain of E. coli called 0157:H7? Several of those infected during that outbreak were diagnosed with hemolytic uremic syndrome, a serious form of kidney failure (remember, the kidneys are your renal system, a side effect of which is mentioned above).
How about the recent February 2011 recall of broccoli, where a number of broccoli products sold under the Signature Café, TFarms and Raley’s labels were recalled due to the risk of  Listeria food poisoning?
It seems most if not all of these recalls have to do with “fresh cut” or “washed and ready to eat” produce, as well as whole produce.
So let’s take a look at the report to see what this Map film can do for our little pathogenic food poisoning friends…

3.2. Pathogenic organisms

…MAP produce is vulnerable from a safety standpoint because modified atmospheres may inhibit organisms that usually warn consumers of spoilage, while the growth of pathogens may be encouraged. Also, slow growing pathogens may further increase in numbers due to the extension of shelf life. Currently, there is concern with the psychrotrophic foodborne pathogens such as L. monocytogenes, Yersinia entercolitica and Aeromonas hydrophila, as well as non-proteolytic C. botulinum, although clearly a number of other microorganisms, especially Salmonella spp., E. coli O157:H7 and Shigella spp., can be potential health risks.

3.3. Clostridium botulinum (botulism)

…there is some concern about the use of MAP with respect to this organism (Zagory 1995). Depending on the product in a MA package, the level of O2 can decrease rapidly if the product is temperature abused and product respiration increases, leaving a highly anaerobic environment ideal for the growth and toxin production of C. botulinum (Francis and others 1999)…
…in 1987, four circus performers in Sarasota, FL became ill with symptoms of botulism after consuming coleslaw prepared from packaged shredded cabbage purchased three weeks earlier in New Orleans (Solomon and others 1990). Researchers suspected that the cabbage had been packaged using MAP and that contaminated cabbage further contaminated the dressing, leading to the recovery of C. botulinum type A toxin and spores from the dressing.
…Lilly and others (1996) found that only 0.3% (1 of 337) of sampled shredded cabbage obtained from retail suppliers in the United States contained C. botulinum. However, the products tested had all been stored at 4°C (39.2°F), below the minimum for growth of proteolytic C. botulinum
Growth and toxin production of C. botulinum before obvious product spoilage has also been observed on Agaricus bisporus mushrooms (Sugiyama and Yang 1975) and potato slices (Dignan 1985). As well, Austin and others (1998) performed challenge studies using both nonproteolytic and proteolytic strains of C. botulinum on MAP fresh-cut vegetables and found that samples of butternut squash (5°C [41°F], 21 d) and onion (25°C [77°F], 6 d) appeared organoleptically acceptable when toxin was detected. It was also demonstrated that toxin production by C. botulinum varied with the vegetables tested. Only nonproteolytic strains growing on butternut squash were capable of producing neurotoxin at temperatures as low as 5°C (41°F ) in 21 d, whereas proteolytic strains were able to produce toxin on all vegetables tested (onion, butternut squash, rutabaga, romaine lettuce, stir-fry and mixed salad), except coleslaw at 15°C (59°F) and higher (Austin and others 1998)…
Fresh mushrooms and tomatoes have also been shown to contain spores of Clostridium spp., and therefore the possibility of botulism associated with these MAP products must not be ignored (Zagory 1995).

3.4. Listeria monocytogenes

Recently, concerns about possible pathogen contamination in MAP produce have focused on L. monocytogenes due to its ability to grow at refrigeration temperatures (NACMCF 1999). Numerous researchers have reported that this organism can remain largely unaffected by MAP, while the normal microflora is inhibited (Amatanidou and others 1999; Francis and O’Bierne 1997, 1998). Thus, although MAP produce can remain organoleptically acceptable, L. monocytogenes, with a reduced microflora and, especially if low levels of lactic acid bacteria are present, can grow at low temperatures to potentially harmful levels during the extended storage life of a MAP produce product
Early studies showed that L. monocytogenes inoculated onto broccoli, asparagus and cauliflower was unaffected by a modified atmosphere of 3% CO2, 18% O2 and 79% N2 for 10 d at 10°C (Berrang and others 1989a). Further studies by Beuchat and Brackett (1990a) clearly demonstrated that L. monocytogenes increased significantly in number on lettuce stored in a modified atmosphere of 3% O2 and 97% N2
…Francis and O’Beirne (1997) also reported that the growth of L. monocytogenes was stimulated by nitrogen flushing at 8°C (46.4°F). In addition, increasing CO2 levels from 10 to 20% has been reported to stimulate the growth of L. monocytogenes in a surface model system (Amanatidou and others 1999).
Challenge studies conducted by Farber and others (1998) focused on commercially available packaged vegetables and salads, as well as vegetables processed to mimic foodservice conditions. The importance of refrigeration was clearly demonstrated as L. monocytogenes population levels remained constant on all fresh-cut, processed and packaged vegetables stored at 4°C (39.2°F), with the exception of butternut squash and carrots on which the levels increased and decreased, respectively. At 10°C (50°F), the growth of L. monocytogenes was supported on all vegetables tested with the exception of chopped carrots, where the population decreased by 2 log units over 9 d. The inhibitory properties of raw, uncooked carrots and carrot juice on the growth of L. monocytogenes have been previously reported (Beuchat and Brackett 1990b). As well, Jacxsens and others (1999) reported a decline in L. monocytogenes on both Brussels sprouts and carrots packaged under a modified atmosphere (2 to 3% O2, 2 to 3% CO2, and 94 to 96% N2) and stored at 7°C (44.6°F)…
…and the authors concluded that these conditions might allow L. monocytogenes to reach potentially hazardous levels during the shelf life of the product…
The effects of competition between the indigenous microflora and pathogens on MAP produce have not been studied extensively. However, in a recent study, Francis and O’Beirne (1998) used a surface model agar system to examine the effects of storage atmosphere on L. monocytogenes and the competing microflora (Pseudomonas fluorescens, P. aeruginosa, Enterobacter cloacae, Enterobacter agglomerans and Leuconostoc citreum). The findings suggested that MAP conditions (5-20% CO2, balance N2 and 3% O2) might increase the growth rate of L. monocytogenes
…Liao and Sapers (1999) also reported that P. fluorescens strains inhibited the growth of L. monocytogenes on endive leaves and spinach, possibly due to the production of a fluorescent siderophore by the pseudomonads. In general, at 3% O2, a level often reached in commercial MAP packages, it appeared that growth of the inoculated mixed natural population was decreased, whereas L. monocytogenesproliferated.
Reports of L. monocytogenes growing on sliced apples in controlled atmosphere (Conway and others 1998) and peeled potatoes in vacuum-packages (Juneja and others 1998) at abusive temperatures provide further evidence that this organism may pose a safety risk with respect to certain MAP fruit and vegetable products, and reiterates the importance of Good Agriculture Practices (GAP), Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and HACCP for produce post-harvest handling and processing.
More research needs to be done to examine the influence of different atmospheres, background microflora and storage temperatures on the survival and growth of L. monocytogenes on MAP fresh-cut produce.

3.5. Aeromonas hydrophila

Aeromonas spp. can be found on a wide variety of foods, as well as in most aquatic environments and most often causes gastroenteritis, and occasionally septicemia (Kirov 1997)… A. hydrophila can grow at refrigeration temperatures, and several studies have shown that growth is not affected by low O2 levels (1.5%) and CO2 levels up to 50% (Francis and others 1999). A survey of 97 prepared salads found A. hydrophila to be present in 21.6% of them, significantly lower than in meat products tested (Fricker and Tompsett 1989). Hudson and De Lacy (1991) also did a small survey of 30 salads and found A. hydrophila in only one salad package not containing mayonnaise. They surmised that the mayonnaise lowered the pH of the food, thereby inhibiting the growth of or inactivating the aeromonads present…
Berrang and others (1989b) determined that although at both 4°C (39.2°F) and 15°C (59°F), the shelf life of broccoli, asparagus and cauliflower was prolonged by MAP (that is, 11-18% O2, 3-10% CO2, 97% N2), it did not negatively affect the growth of resident or inoculated A. hydrophila. Interestingly, the organism was detected on most lots obtained from the commercial producer. Therefore, for storage periods of 8-21 d, depending on the product, A. hydrophila increased from roughly 104 to 108 or 109 CFU/g, and product that appeared suitable for consumption was heavily contaminated with the pathogen. As with L. monocytogenes, the CO2 levels that were inhibitory to A. hydrophila (that is, >50%) also damaged the product (Bennik and others 1995)…

3.6. Other pathogens of concern with respect to MAP produce

Organisms such as Salmonella, Shigella, E. coli, and various enteric viruses, such as hepatitis A, have been implicated in produce outbreaks, and, therefore, there is concern about their behavior under modified atmosphere conditions (Zagory 1995; Amanatidou and others 1999). A 1986 outbreak of shigellosis was traced back to commercially distributed MAP shredded lettuce; 347 people were affected in two west Texas counties (Davis and others 1988). Fernandez-Escartin and others (1989) tested the ability of three strains of Shigella to grow on the surface of fresh-cut papaya, jicama, and watermelon and reported that populations increased significantly when the inoculated product was left at room temperature for 4-6 h. Shigella is not part of the normal flora associated with produce, but can be passed on as contaminants by infected food handlers and contaminated manure and irrigation water.
More recently, an outbreak of Salmonella Newport was reported in the U.K., associated with the consumption of ready-to-eat salad vegetables (PHLS 2001). To date, nine human cases have been identified with the isolated strain from the implicated salad vegetables having an identical PFGE pattern to three of the human isolates.
Salmonella Typhimurium and L. monocytogenes actually had an increased growth rate at these concentrations; growth increased from 0.011 and 0.031µ/h to 0.023 and 0.041 µ/h for S. Typhimurium and L. monocytogenes, respectively. In general, E. coli O157:H7, S. Hadar and S. Typhimurium were only inhibited by CO2 levels that caused damage and spoilage to the produce (Piagentini and others 1997; Amanatidou and others 1999; Francis and others 1999). A modified atmosphere of 3% O2 and 97% N2 also had no significant effect on E. coli O157:H7 inoculated onto shredded lettuce, sliced cucumber, and shredded carrot and incubated at 12 and 21°C (21.6 and 69.8°F) (Abdul-Raouf and others 1993). At 5°C (41°F), populations of viable E. coli O157:H7 declined on stored vegetables; however, at 12 and 21°C (53.6 and 69.8°F), populations increased, demonstrating the importance of refrigeration temperatures in maintaining product safety. Richert and others (2000) who, although not studying MAP, reported that E. coli O157:H7 could survive on produce (broccoli, cucumbers and green peppers) stored at 4°C (39.2°F) and proliferate rapidly when stored at 15°C (59°F). In 1993, there were two foodborne outbreaks of enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) linked to carrots in a tabouleh salad served in New Hampshire and to an airline salad on a flight from North Carolina to Rhode Island (CDC 1994). Although these carrots were of U.S. origin, ETEC is a common cause of diarrheal illness in Mexico and developing countries that import fresh product to North America. Research on the behavior of this pathogen on fresh and fresh-cut product, both under MAP and without MAP, seems warranted…
…A more recent study, investigating the survival of C. jejuni on MAP fresh-cut cilantro and lettuce, found that refrigeration temperatures in combination with a modified atmosphere of 2% O2, 18% CO2 and 80% N2 can be favorable for bacteria (Tran and others 2000). Due to the microaerophilic nature of Campylobacter spp., which require 5% O2, 10% CO2 and 85% N2 for optimal growth, the investigators suspected that a low O2 modified atmosphere may provide an environment conducive to survival of the pathogen…
Table VI-2: Polymers, film types and permeability available for packaging of MAP produce:
Edible Films  O2 permeability (  -  CO2 permeability (  Relative Humidity
Pectin 57.5 - - 87
Chitosan 91.4 - 1553 93
Wheat (gluten) 190/250 - 4750/7100 91/94.5
Na caseinate 77 - 462 77
Gluten-DATEM 153 - 1705 94.5
Gluten-beeswax 133 - 1282 91
Na casenate/Myvacet 83 - 154 48
MC/MPMC/fatty acids 46.6 - 180 52
MC and beeswax 4 - 27 42
Gluten-DATEM and beeswax <3 - 15 56
Gluten-Beeswax and beeswax <3 - 13 56
Methylcellulose-palmitic acid 78.8 - - 100
Zein 0.362 - 2.672 0.1163
Cozeen 0.892 - 5.252 0.4073
Polyethylene 8.32 - 26.12 -
Polypropylene 0.552 - - 0.000653
Sucrose polyester 2.102 - - 0.000423
Smart Films 
  • O2scavengers with O2indicators
  • antibody based detection systems for detection of microbial pathogen

Antimicrobial filmsi) Edible
  • Chlorinated phenoxy compound with biocide incorporated into the polymer layer (that is, nisin, lysozyme)
  • Chlorine dioxide with biocide incorporated into polymer layer
  • Edible films with sorbic acid, sodium benzoate, benzoic acid and potassium sorbate
  • Pine based volatiles added to edible film
  • Horseradish extract added to edible film
ii) Non-edible films/products
  • Propyl paraben dispersed in a polymer emulsion (Permax 801 or Carboset)
  • LDPE with Imazalil
  • LDPE with grapefruit seed extract
  • Gas, as produced by sachets or other materials to produce sodium metabisulfite to obtain the production of sulfite

This list of ingredients includes substances that many people have high allergic reactions to, including wheat (gluten) and milk (caseinate), and ones that are just downright bad for your health, including Chlorine, corn byproducts, and other animal fatty acid byproducts.
So now at least you know. That shiny, healthy looking high-pro glow that is emanating from your fresh store-bought produce is more than likely this MAP – a film consisting of any number of inorganic, unhealthy compounds, including pork rinds and chicken bones!
The most important factor here is to understand that in an attempt prolong shelf life and reduce natural spoilage of our produce, these film covers are also creating an environment for bad pathogens to grow. And since the produce shows no signs of spoilage or contamination, the consumer may never know what is actually thriving thanks to that prolonged life allowed by modern, yet impossibly dangerous and deceiving food science.
And so once again, this is your Federal Food and Drug Administration at work.
When will we learn that the FDA is in the business of making its government owned corporations lives easier, by deregulating the rules that govern the food and drug industries and by allowing just about anything to be called “edible” and “food”, while simultaneously destroying the lives of anyone who tries to heal or cure disease without the FDA’s permission… and stealing their patents to boot? And now arresting farmers who transport raw milk across state borders as if milk is a illicit drug?
What is it going to take to make you stand up to this beast… this tyrant?
Less fluoride, perhaps…
–Clint Richardson (