Testing by the Health Research Institute found 92 unknown compounds in Bored Cow’s synthetic milk — produced from a “form of genetic engineering” — in addition to significant nutrient deficiencies. Over a dozen companies use similar formulations in products like cream cheese, smoothies and ice cream.
Recent testing revealed 92 unknown molecules — and a fungicide — in “synthetic” milk now sold in common grocery chains, according to the Health Research Institute (HRI).
The product, sold by Bored Cow, uses a fake whey protein called “ProFerm” made by biotech company and partner Perfect Day. Perfect Day uses genetically modified “microflora” to produce the synthetic milk protein.
According to Bored Cow, their product is a new kind of “animal-free” milk alternative “made with real milk protein from fermentation.”
HRI, a nonprofit independent lab based in Fairfield, Iowa, examined multiple samples of Bored Cow’s “original” flavor milk using mass spectrometry to test the claim that the synthetic protein it contained was the same as real milk protein.
Synthetic milk has never before been consumed by humans and has not undergone safety testing by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), according to HRI’s Chief Scientist and CEO John Fagan, Ph.D.
The testing results have yet to be published, but Fagan shared a few highlights with The Defender, including that the synthetic milk lacked many important micronutrients found in natural milk such as an omega-3 fatty acid, vitamin E and some B vitamins.
It also contained a host of compounds that could be harmful to human health, Fagan said.
Fagan — a molecular biologist and former cancer researcher at the National Institutes of Health — has been a worldwide pioneer in testing genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Commenting on his lab’s findings, he told The Defender, “The 92 unknown molecules we found have never been studied by scientists. So we don’t know whether they’re safe or dangerous, whether they are nutrients or toxics.”
Only eight compounds were identifiable. The rest were “uncharacterized” by scientific literature. Fagain explained:
“In any natural material, you’re going to probably find a majority of compounds that science has not studied.
“Human beings have this arrogant idea that they know everything, but in fact, we know just a little fragment of what there is to know about the living world …
“[For example, a sample of] wheat will have many compounds that are unknown to science. But the difference is that you and I — our ancestors going back 4,000 years — have been eating wheat. And so we know from traditional use that whatever’s in wheat, it’s safe for us to eat.