The role of China’s wet markets in producing COVID is ignored for two reasons. Vaccines that Pharma is developing with $1 billion of our tax dollars would be shown to be a fool’s errand as new animal strains erupt from the markets. And wild-eyed conspiracists, when they aren’t exposing Satanic cultists who eat babies, call the virus a “bioweapon” not an outgrowth of animal practices. (Were the animal originated SARS, MERS, Ebola, Avian Flu and HIV also bioweapons conspiracists? How about malaria?)
Even WHO wants to ignore the cruel, unsanitary wet wildlife instant slaughter markets. According to the Hill, WHO food safety and animal diseases expert Peter Ben Embarek says the live animal markets “play a key role in providing food and jobs to millions of people.” So do opium and heroin markets.
Walden Bello, a columnist for Foreign Policy in Focus, wrote in Counterpunch that China is the center of the wildlife trade and that “scores of both licensed and illegal commercial breeding centers supply tigers, porcupines, pangolins, bears, snakes and rats.” In 2016, the industry employed 14 million people and made $74 billion, he notes.
COVID surfaces on fur farms
Most people have now heard that minks are contracting and spreading COVID-19. Is that a surprise when small mammals like the civet cat and raccoon dog harbored and spread the original SARS coronavirus virus in China?
According to the BBC, more than 200 people have now contracted mink-derived coronavirus. The COVID strains have invaded fur farms in the Netherlands, Denmark, Spain, Sweden, Italy and in the U.S. reports the BBC. The COVID mink strain contracted by 12 people in Denmark could prove to be resistant to treatment adds the news outlet.
As we saw with SARS, produced by wet markets, transmission is bi-directional. “People carried the coronavirus onto mink farms in the Netherlands, starting a viral back-and-forth that ended up with 68% of fur farm workers and their close associates infected,” reports CNN.
Animal origins ignored at our own peril
Focusing on a vaccine enriches vaccine makers and absolves meat industries while the perpetuation factors of COVID are dangerously ignored. If the virus is in animals and transmitted by animals as CNN reports, it is clearly in some food and the wastewater systems that are close to food operations and slaughterhouses. This month another U.S. slaughterhouse was closed due to a COVID outbreak and a recent COVID outbreak closed a fish market in Sri Lanka. The packaging of shrimp from Ecuador has also harbored COVID as have chicken wings from Brazil.
The fingerprints of advertisers can be seen on mainstream media reportage of COVID. Pharma is likely the biggest mainstream media advertiser, explaining pro-vaccine coverage and downplaying of animal links. Processed food products from Big Meat are likely the second biggest mainstream media advertisers, which explains why huge animal disease outbreaks in the past in the U.S. like porcine epidemic diarrhea (PEDV) and avian flu were barely reported. (Nor were there photos of euthanized animals.) Who would eat the food products?
For the same reason, mainstream media has not even mentioned a virus similar to COVID that threatens U.S. pork slaughterhouses and pork producers right now. The bat-originated coronavirus SADS-CoV (Severe Acute Diarrhea Syndrome) also originated in China and is hosted by eaten animals. The looming virus could swap genes with the current COVID virus or cause its own pandemic but who has heard of it?
Dr. Paul Sundberg, executive director of the Swine Health Information Center, told National Hog Farmer what the mink outbreaks and new COVID strains are confirming: coronaviruses can and do mutate quickly.
“They can jump from species to species, and certainly that’s been the U.S. pork experience with coronaviruses,” he says. “TGE [transmissible gastroenteritis virus] is a coronavirus. Then in 2013, we got PEDV [porcine epidemic diarrhea virus], which is another one, and deltacorona virus is the third. There’s another coronavirus in China right now, called Severe Acute Diarrhea Syndrome or SADS-CoV, that we are watching and developing a diagnostic test, to make sure that we can find it should it get here.”
Will mainstream media report that vaccines, lucrative to industry, are no solution on the backdrop of incessant virus mutations? Will it warn about the threat of SADS-CoV on U.S. pork operations when it arrives (assuming it is not already here)? Will it cover COVID mink strains on U.S. fur farms and the dangers to workers and surrounding areas?
As long as advertisers like Pfizer and Tyson fund mainstream news, the answer is no.
Martha Rosenberg is a freelance journalist and the author of the highly acclaimed “Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health,” published by Prometheus Books. Check her Facebook page.