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Rally Outside USDA Today to Protest Poultry Inspection Privatization

poultry_linePhoto: USDAIf you think "pink slime" is bad, what about thousands of scabbed and potentially contaminated chicken going down plant conveyor lines at almost 200 birds per minute, with less federal inspectors present? That scary image is the reason FIC will be joining federal inspectors and other concerned groups in protest today against USDA's proposal to make that image a reality. The agency aims to reduce the role of government inspectors at poultry plants, allegedly to focus their efforts on areas "that pose the greatest risk to food safety," as parroted in this Washington Post blog.

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GAP to Join Federal Food Workers to Protest Privatized Poultry Inspection

poultry_inspectorPhoto: USDAOn Monday, April 2, GAP will be joining federal USDA employees and fellow consumer watchdogs for a rally outside the Agriculture Department D.C. headquarters in protest of the agency's proposal to hand over poultry inspection responsibilities to industry.

The USDA calls it "modernizing" poultry slaughter inspection, but if we're going to be frank, the move would essentially privatize inspection, which is definitely not the way to go if food safety is the top priority.

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‘Pink Slime’ Maker Goes On Offensive, But Whistleblower Messages Remain

ground_beefNews coverage of "pink slime" continues as the ammoniated beef maker, Beef Products, Inc. (BPI), tries to restore consumer confidence in its product's safety and to regain business it has lost due to the recent uproar. ABC News, leading the way in reporting on the issue, says BPI is organizing a consumer education program, countering what the company calls a "mis-information campaign" by media outlets, including ABC.

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Tomato Industry Exec Pleads Guilty to Price Fixing & Admits Moldy Products

tomato_can_attImage via wikimedia user Nomadic LassNews has broken that dirty dealings enabled the food industry to sell consumers substandard and outdated tomato products, including some that had mold contents above federal guidelines, at higher prices.

Frederick Scott Salyer, former owner of what once was one of the largest U.S. producers of tomato products – California-based SK Foods – pled guilty last week to price fixing and bribing major food companies to buy his company's low-quality products.

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Maker of 'Pink Slime' Suspends Plants, Attacks Media Coverage

slaughterhouse_cattle_bodies_attPhoto via wikimedia user Thomas BjørkanThe Associated Press reports today that Beef Products, Inc. (BPI) – maker of ammoniated beef trimmings, or "pink slime" – has announced that it is suspending all but one of its four operations since demand for its controversial product has been more than halved.

The announcement comes after major grocery retailers including Kroger and Safeway dropped the ammoniated beef from store shelves and school districts asserted they will phase out the pink slime after USDA's move to give schools a choice to opt out of serving the product to students.

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Court Orders FDA to Act on Antibiotic Use in Animal Agriculture

cow_feedGreat news! A federal court ruled Thursday that FDA must finally stop lagging when it comes to regulating the overuse of antibiotics in farm animals and follow through on its 1977 proposal to ban the non-therapeutic use of two common antibiotics in animal feed, unless the makers of the drugs can prove their safety.

Yes, the FDA proposal was in limbo for three-and-a-half decades until the agency quietly abandoned it in December 2011, only to limit use of a less common antibiotic in January.

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Kroger Among Grocery Chains to Drop Pink Slime

kroger_attPhoto via flickr user belbooThe avalanche of pink slime removal at various grocery store chains continues to fall. After Safeway announced it would no longer sell the ammoniated beef trimmings, ABC News reported that SUPERVALU (which operates many smaller chains including Albertsons, Jewel-Osco, and Shop 'n Save) and Food Lion did the same, followed by Giant Food, Stop & Shop and Kroger (the nation's largest traditional grocer).

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