Thursday, May 14, 2009

Food Companies to Consumers: Suck It!

The New York Times is reporting today that more and more food companies are shoving the responsibility for food safety off on us, the consumers. This is simply unconscionable.
Increasingly, the corporations that supply Americans with processed foods are unable to guarantee the safety of their ingredients. In this case, ConAgra could not pinpoint which of the more than 25 ingredients in its pies was carrying salmonella. Other companies do not even know who is supplying their ingredients, let alone if those suppliers are screening the items for microbes and other potential dangers, interviews and documents show.

Yet the supply chain for ingredients in processed foods — from flavorings to flour to fruits and vegetables — is becoming more complex and global as the drive to keep food costs down intensifies. As a result, almost every element, not just red meat and poultry, is now a potential carrier of pathogens, government and industry officials concede.
This is where government regulation should be working for the consumer.

Under the Bush regime the budgets were cut for all the food regulatory agencies, and Bush cronies were appointed to head those same agencies. The result? A food supply that poisons Americans.

Congress needs to step in, quickly, and force these companies to make their foods safe. There is simply no justification for a food company like ConAgra to not be able to track down where a pathogen got into their products. Frankly I think the Department of Justice should be investigating this and if necessary file Federal criminal charges against the CEOs of these companies that allowed people to get sick from eating their foods.

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