Monday, December 09, 2019

Eat At Your Own Risk


Member of Freedom Caucus and of House Judiciary Committee and sex-crimes apologist:
Less taxes and regulation, more freedom for you and your family. Also, more food poisoning. The Hill in September reported

A new rule, finalized today, would reduce the number of government food safety inspectors in pork plants by 40 percent and remove most of the remaining inspectors from production lines. In their place, a smaller number of company employees — who are not required to receive any training — would conduct the “sorting” tasks that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) previously referred to as “inspection.” The rule would also allow companies to design their own microbiological testing programs to measure food safety rather than requiring companies to meet the same standard. 

Equally alarming, the new rule would remove all line speed limits in the plants, allowing companies to speed up their lines with abandon. With fewer government inspectors on the slaughter lines, there would be fewer trained workers watching out for consumer safety. Faster line speeds would make it harder for the limited number of remaining meat inspectors and plant workers to do their jobs.

The experience from a long-running pilot project that involved five large hog slaughterhouses offers some insight into the possible impact of such radical deregulation. Consumer groups reviewed the government’s data from the five pilot plants and other plants of comparable size. They found that the plants with fewer inspectors and faster lines had more regulatory violations than others....

It’s not only consumers of meat who would pay a price for this misguided and dangerous new rule. There are more than 90,000 pork slaughterhouse workers whose health and limbs are already at risk under the current line speed limit of 1,106 hogs per hour. Pork slaughterhouse workers will tell you that they can barely keep up with current line speeds. They work in noisy, slippery workplaces with large knives, hooks and bandsaws, making tens of thousands of forceful repetitive motions on each and every shift to cut and break down the hogs.

The USDA is ignoring three decades of studies indicating that faster line speeds and the forceful nature of the work in meatpacking plants are the root causes of a staggeringly high rate of work-related injuries and illnesses.





In the Democratic presidential race, on the broad topic of deregulation (or its sister, privatization), there has been- as far as I know- no position paper by any of the candidates. and no forum, no town hall, and no debate questions. (If there had been, we would have heard about food safety inspections.) Its absence says a lot, whether about the media, the candidates themselves, or the false narrative that the Democratic Party is tempted by socialism and hurtling leftward.




Share |

No comments:

In Character

It seems like months ago but was only five weeks ago that Senator Bernard Sanders was criticized when he was Asked by interviewe...