FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

How the USDA and Big Food Keep the Public in the Dark

January brought implementation of the California law mandating more room for egg laying chickens. But larger cages do nothing for the suffering of hatchery chickens which are ground up alive at birth. Yes, you read that right.  Until the egg industry ceases to buy its layers from hatcheries which the industry admits kills “200 million male chicks” a year, there is no such thing as an ethical egg.  Hatcheries also risk human health by injecting the eggs of future egg layers with antibiotics. Yum.

Earlier this month, video obtained from a Whole Foods egg supplier, Petaluma Farms in Petaluma, CA, shows just how bad the situation is on commercial egg farms. Hens are depicted in disturbing states of sickness and suffering, despite the operation hewing to Humane Farm Animal Care standards, reports the New York Times.

While the U.S.D.A. is in charge of farm regulation– it recently announced new standards to reduce bacteria in poultry including better inspections–it shamelessly plays both sides of the food “street.” According to an expose recent in the New York Times, it uses tax dollars to help private industry develop more “profitable” animals in a semi-clandestine operation called the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center. The experiments often cause the death of mothers and offspring, reports the Times and veterinarians have objected for years.

The U.S. government’s allegiance to the meat industry at the price of consumers is also seen in its handling of “mad cow” scares.  Four “mad cows” have been found in the United States in the last ten years and the government protected the identities of the Alabama and Texas ranches that produced two of them.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the first “mad cow,” which came from Canada, was eaten by the public and health officials even refused to identify the restaurant outlets that served the meat. When the most recent “mad cow” was found in the U.S. in 2012, at a slaughter facility near Fresno, the government did not even look for the source of its fatal, transmissible disease, preemptively calling it “atypical.” Thanks!

Food consumers are not powerless over these practices. They were successful in getting pink slime (“lean finely textured beef”) out of the National School Lunch Program and the manufacturer shut down in just a few days of outrage.

Martha Rosenberg is an investigative health reporter. She is the author of  Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health (Prometheus).

 

More articles by:

Martha Rosenberg is an investigative health reporter. She is the author of  Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health (Prometheus).

December 10, 2018
Jacques R. Pauwels
Foreign Interventions in Revolutionary Russia
Richard Klin
The Disasters of War
Katie Fite
Rebranding Bundy
Gary Olson
A Few Thoughts on Politics and Personal Identity
Patrick Cockburn
Brexit Britain’s Crisis of Self-Confidence Will Only End in Tears and Rising Nationalism
Andrew Moss
Undocumented Citizen
Dean Baker
Trump and China: Going With Patent Holders Against Workers
Lawrence Wittner
Reviving the Nuclear Disarmament Movement: a Practical Proposal
Dan Siegel
Thoughts on the 2018 Elections and Beyond
Thomas Knapp
Election 2020: I Can Smell the Dumpster Fires Already
Weekend Edition
December 07, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Steve Hendricks
What If We Just Buy Off Big Fossil Fuel? A Novel Plan to Mitigate the Climate Calamity
Jeffrey St. Clair
Cancer as Weapon: Poppy Bush’s Radioactive War on Iraq
Paul Street
The McCain and Bush Death Tours: Establishment Rituals in How to be a Proper Ruler
Jason Hirthler
Laws of the Jungle: The Free Market and the Continuity of Change
Ajamu Baraka
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70: Time to De-Colonize Human Rights!
Andrew Levine
Thoughts on Strategy for a Left Opposition
Jennifer Matsui
Dead of Night Redux: A Zombie Rises, A Spook Falls
Rob Urie
Degrowth: Toward a Green Revolution
Binoy Kampmark
The Bomb that Did Not Detonate: Julian Assange, Manafort and The Guardian
Robert Hunziker
The Deathly Insect Dilemma
Robert Fisk
Spare Me the American Tears for the Murder of Jamal Khashoggi
Joseph Natoli
Tribal Justice
Ron Jacobs
Getting Pushed Off the Capitalist Cliff
Macdonald Stainsby
Unist’ot’en Camp is Under Threat in Northern Canada
Senator Tom Harkin
Questions for Vice-President Bush on Posada Carriles
W. T. Whitney
Two Years and Colombia’s Peace Agreement is in Shreds
Ron Jacobs
Getting Pushed Off the Capitalist Cliff
Ramzy Baroud
The Conspiracy Against Refugees
David Rosen
The Swamp Stinks: Trump & Washington’s Rot
Raouf Halaby
Wall-to-Wall Whitewashing
Daniel Falcone
Noam Chomsky Turns 90
Dean Baker
An Inverted Bond Yield Curve: Is a Recession Coming?
Nick Pemberton
The Case For Chuck Mertz (Not Noam Chomsky) as America’s Leading Intellectual
Ralph Nader
New Book about Ethics and Whistleblowing for Engineers Affects Us All!
Dan Kovalik
The Return of the Nicaraguan Contras, and the Rise of the Pro-Contra Left
Jeremy Kuzmarov
Exposing the Crimes of the CIAs Fair-Haired Boy, Paul Kagame, and the Rwandan Patriotic Front
Jasmine Aguilera
Lessons From South of the Border
Manuel García, Jr.
A Formula for U.S. Election Outcomes
Sam Pizzigati
Drug Company Execs Make Millions Misleading Cancer Patients. Here’s One Way to Stop Them
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
Agriculture as Wrong Turn
James McEnteer
And That’s The Way It Is: Essential Journalism Books of 2018
Chris Gilbert
Biplav’s Communist Party of Nepal on the Move: Dispatch by a Far-Flung Bolivarian
Judith Deutsch
Siloed Thinking, Climate, and Disposable People: COP 24 and Our Discontent
Jill Richardson
Republicans Don’t Want Your Vote to Count
John Feffer
‘Get Me Outta Here’: Trump Turns the G20 into the G19
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail