Restructuring Meat-Poultry Processors needed
Long before a Trump Administration, the cartels moved in, hijacked, and supplanted the family farming- based agriculture sector, particularly the area of meat and poultry processing. This action sealed a guarantee that a gang of financial gluttons could and would exact the proverbial pound of flesh from producers and eaters alike.
With an all-out blood-lust to receive the greatest profit while foregoing, at any cost, investment into operating safeguards, health regulations and production standards, the interest and needs of the performing workforce were merely an afterthought.
An exaggeration? Over at least a decade, in the pre-COVID-19 years, cartel owned poultry and meat processors continued to function while any significant correction of food safety violations went unmet and unaddressed. As well, the same cartels managed to seize the reins of food trade organizations, such as National Chicken Council (NCC). These positions afforded the entities leverage to influence and affect the policies of government agencies, in their favor. In particular, a 2017 NCC petition to amend USDA poultry Food Safety and Inspection regulations is exemplary. The NCC petition called for ushering in a conditional line speed waiver program to permit young chicken slaughterhouses to operate without food line speed limits, entirely. At that time, and as early as 2014, line speeds at these slaughterhouses were operating, already, at a record speed of 140 birds per minute. On these inspection safety lines, workers are required to inspect 2.33 bird carcasses for tumors, feces contamination, and other defects IN ONE SECOND!
Independent food growers had then bit the dust, and the American consumer had become hostage to unsavory practices, and the wide scale abuse from the dominant mega-food processors; even before COVID-19 entered the picture, and President Trump announced that the doors of the meat sector would need to remain open.
With serious concern and careful review, this author strongly argues against relying upon Goliaths of the meat-poultry processing sector to design, revise and adopt the level of sanitation methodology highly required to safeguard and protect this sector’s workforce, as well as the foodstuffs for millions of mouths of a hungry and captive public.
This complex, vital and sensitive task revolves around reawakening the determination and unrelenting tenacity of the American public to effectively compel the adoption of an alternative war-plan which may require the Army Corps of Engineers and National Guard Forces, as deployment of these bodies similarly assisted effectively with COVID-19 support cleaning, sanitizing and testing operations recently across the country.
A sketch of required activity each and every meat-poultry plant should immediately undergo includes, but is not limited to:
a restructuring of meat-poultry processing facilities with a keen eye toward reducing crowded assembly production lines;
a thorough cleaning of plant and equipment, to near medical standards;
a daily criteria to be established for the returning personnel, which incorporates health checks, temperature monitoring at entryways of the facilities;
viral testing and screens of each employee, administrative staff, included;
plant design revisions to incorporate much needed protective, contamination preventive work gear and novel sanitary measures to guard the production space from sneezes, coughs, accidental saliva contamination.
Simultaneously, measures must be taken to address the workers’ living conditions and enactment of new solutions to remedy their immediate transportation requirements.
Expanded on a global scale, this matter alone underscores why a LaRouche-led initiative for a new Global Health Care System is a timely, much needed shot in the arm for humanity overall