Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Food safety recalls and government undersight

"It is the government's cuts and policies of self-regulation that have failed," Allen said. "In this case, XL failed to protect food safety. By the time the CFIA inspectors got involved, the contamination had spun out of control."
This could be anywhere in the U.S. just insert FDA inspectors and Brown for Allen. The major budget cuts for that agency came under ( of course) George W. because after all who needs safe food to eat?
Can't remember the exact figure but Bush cut the agency funding even after it requested a funding increase in 2008. So now we head closer to the perfect storm in food production. Cattle ranchers already hit with a draught the past two years have had to thin their herds causing prices to jump. Good luck finding a pound of ground meat for under $5 a lb. any time in the near future. And I'd bet anything that the current Canadian situation will affect our beef prices here in the U.S. Much of our beef comes from Canada especially ground beef a primary source of the contamination. We however assume our meat is contaminated and cook it accordingly. Legislation just a few years ago prevents the use of "downer" cows. After all what rancher wants a bad reputation in this difficult market?
There's another factor to consider here which is that the number of workers in these factories was cut and production was increased. In this case XL Foods was processing 4000 head of cattle per day. The problem was first discovered in the trimmings used for ground beef but with cross contamination it's hard to say exactly how much beef was affected.
Here's a current list of stores in the U.S. affected:

(Sorry blogger for some reason won't let me post links)
You will note that they contain most of the major retail food chains in our area. The one exception is Winco Foods which gets its' meats from United Foods from the midwest. But they too have not been without problems in the past.
In other recall news Sunland Inc has recalled 101 of it's products mainly peanut butter due to salmonella contamination. To date 18 states have been effected and 30 people have been sickened. And this comes on the heels of a listeria outbreak from imported Ricotta cheese. If that wasn't bad enough there was yet another salmonella outbreak from smoked salmon. To add insult to injury a kettle corn recall from Dale and Thomas of Englewood N.J. was issued today, the product contaminated with listeria. 
Good grief is anything safe to eat anymore? Get me a reservation for Ray's in Cleveland it might be safer.


Murr Brewster said...

If I remain ignorant of these things, will they lose the power to hurt me? Because I'm operating on that assumption.

Randal Graves said...

Why do you think they toss all those chemicals in there, Chicken Little? Isopropylbenzocarboxenongate-27 is good for you.

BBC said...

They've been fussing about stuff like this all my life but I'm still here. To bad we can't have road kill cafes in this country but they just closed down a Chinese place in Kentucky when they caught them sneaking a road kill deer in.

Demeur said...

Unfortunately MB ignorance does kill.

But Randal I don't want a third eye.

Fine Billy but it better be USDA road kill. I don't want something that's been laying in the road for weeks.

Anonymous said...

Aw that gook said it was just the family dinner, not for customers.

The Blog Fodder said...

ALWAYS cook ground beef WELL DONE.
XL apparently were playing fast and loose with too many things and it caught up to them big time. CFIA (whose budget was also cut by our Bush-lite Harper) lowered the boom.
When will people learn that the regs are there for a reason and that playing by the rules pays off in the long and short run?

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Russo said...

Why do you think they toss all those chemicals in there, Chicken Little? Isopropylbenzocarboxenongate-27 is good for you.

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