It's Still Profits Over Safety

"...Why won't the USDA require testing? The Times quoted Dr. Kenneth Petersen, assistant administrator of the department's Food Safety and Inspection Service: "I have to look at the entire industry," Petersen said, "not just what is best for public health." That quote perfectly encapsulates the belief system that has spread like a virus for 30 years in our society--that nothing can be allowed to get in the way of driving down the prices of raw materials to fatten profit margins...

...What would happen if we returned to a world in which hamburger was just a ground-up piece of beef? It would cost about 30 cents more per pound, or 7.5 cents more for a Quarter Pounder from McDonald's. Imagine two lines of burgers, one labeled "ground chuck, fully tested" and the other "assorted beef byproducts from untested facilities known to routinely violate safety standards." Would you pay a few pennies extra for the former?..."

Carl Pope
Corporate profits still trump public safety
Sierra January/February 2010

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