Monday, February 18, 2008

Largest Beef Recall in USDA History

If you've been listening to the news (i.e., NPR, NY Times), then you've probably heard this story already: The USDA has recalled 143 million pounds of beef, the largest beef recall in US history.

The Humane Society blew the whistle on Westland/Hallmark Meat Company when they released this video in January:

I encourage you to take a moment to watch the video. Consider the intertwining issues that surround this scandal (i.e., how Westland Meat Co is the #1 meat provider for school lunches). It also raises broader questions on food safety, health outcomes, animal cruelty, and other issues regarding the mechanization of the meat-packing industry. But the real question concerns our behavior: Will we change our meat-eating habits? If so, how?


Ben Wright said...

Michelle: The effectiveness of the Humane Society's video demonstrates how technology compels all citizens and organizations to be ever more diligent about complying with laws and regulations.

Michelle Verges said...

Good point, Ben! So I need to expand my list of issues surrounding this scandal:

1)The role of technology as a digital watchdog

2) The legal system

Point #2 now has me thinking about lobbyists for the meat-packing industry. For instance, these lobbyists have successfully influenced some politicians to endorse lenient rules and regulations on labeling the origin of country regarding meat importation.

Oh dear, Pandora's Box has most certainly been opened!


SBCatMan said...

That's why I do not eat meat. There are equally horrific stories in the poultry industry. It is much easier to abuse a chicken than a cow. Even healthy chickens are easy prey to abusive humans.