Thursday, October 17, 2013

Foster Farms Chicken Contamination Not Due to Gov't Shutdown, Is Repeat Offender

Contrary to misleading headlines, the salmonella outbreak at three Foster Farms chicken processing plants was not due to the federal government shutdown.  

The spread of antibiotic-resistant salmonella is directly due to corporate industrial processing of supermarket chickens. These operations routinely process and sell poultry infested with poisons and toxins, including e.Coli. 

As explained here two months ago in "Supermarket Chickens Laced with Bacteria, Feces, Chemicals:"
"I used to stock-up on chickens at cheap prices and freeze them for future use.  Five years ago, I roasted at least two supermarket birds weekly to feed my then family of three.  No more. Today, I'm nauseous at the thought of buying, handling, and particularly serving these contaminated industrial food products. 
"What changed? I got educated on the hidden, ugly, unhealthy realities of industrial-produced chickens. Despite 'natural"'appearances, they're a particularly disgusting food product of the industrial fake-food industry."   (Click link HERE or above to read the grotesque facts about four-step industrial processing of chickens.) 
As of last week, 317 people were reported by the USDA as very sickened by Foster Farms chickens processed at three California plants. Half of the 317 were hospitalized.  The public health rule-of-thumb is that 20 people are sickened for each officially reported illness from contaminated food.  

Foster Farms has been charged before with producing infected chickens destined for supermarket sales. Yet the USDA continued to allow Foster Farms to sell its tainted products. 
"Foster Farms is no stranger to CDC studies. The Northwest company has been struggling with this problem for some years. According to the CDC report, Foster Farms chicken was found to be infected with the Heidelberg strain in 2004 and again in 2012. The 2012 outbreak, which is still being tracked, led the CDC to investigate the problem...
"The USDA knew it needed to address this problem urgently, says the report, so in December 2012, the “USDA-FSIS announced that all establishments producing not-ready-to-eat ground or comminuted poultry products, including Foster Farms, will be required to reassess their Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points plans.
"But was the USDA-FSIS monitoring the implementation of that plan? Was the agency’s own “hazard analysis” plan upgraded to meet the increased need? And if it was, how did the USDA-FSIS miss the ongoing, and apparently rampant, presence of salmonella Heidelberg in packaged products?" (Source - Triple Pundit: People. Planet, Profits)
The USDA-blessed fix for Foster Farms' latest sickening of consumers? 

Despite previous (obviously empty!) threats, USDA inspectors allowed the three California plants in question to remain open for business while they "investigated." Reports Mark Bittman in the New York Times:
"Three days later, Foster Farms 'submitted and implemented immediate substantive changes to their slaughter and processing to allow for continued operations.' What’s that mean? 'We cannot tell you what their interventions are, because that’s a proprietary issue,' said Englejohn, adding that the interventions comprise 'additional sanitary measures that reduce contamination.'
"Well, we hope so.  Meanwhile, commerce continues and the chicken is out there. Will it be taken off the market after 800 people get sick? Or 1,200? Or when someone dies?"  
Is this latest widespread incident of public sickening from contaminated Foster Farms chicken over? We, the American public, do not know. 

This we do know:

  • A 2009 USDA study found that 87 percent of chicken carcasses tested positive for E. coli after chilling and just prior to packaging.
  • Results of extensive lab testing by Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine "revealed that 48 percent of all chicken samples tested positive for feces."
  • Consumer Reports noted that its 2009 tests that Campylobacter bacteria was in 62% of the chickens and Salmonella bacteria was in 14% of the chickens
  • Consumer Reports reported in the same 2009 tests that 68% of Salmonella, and 60% of Campylobacter bacterias showed resistance to one or more antibiotics
Read Supermarket Chickens Laced with Bacteria, Feces, Chemicals for succinct info about how each of the four steps in industrial processing of chickens contributes to contamination of poultry sold in supermarkets across the nation.  I also offer suggestions on buying uncontaminated chickens at butcher shops, Whole Foods stores, and the like. 

And please... for your health and that of your loved ones... bypass supermarket chickens. They're a particularly disgusting food product of the industrial fake-food industry, whether or not the federal government is shutdown.  


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