The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Chicken Imports from China a Raw Deal for U.S. Consumers
In a post election surprise, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced that the People’s Republic of China had completed the necessary paperwork to certify four of its poultry processing plants to be able to export processed poultry products to the U.S. The raw poultry, however, needs to come from "approved sources," such as the U.S., Canada or Chile.
Chicken processing in China.
The announcement came in the form of a "Special Alert" to stakeholders who are subscribed to the agency’s "Constituent Update" that is normally published weekly and circulated on Friday afternoons. We urge Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to rethink this potentially dangerous decision.
China’s food safety system is a wreck. Food & Water Watch has been fighting FSIS on this issue since it first proposed granting China equivalency status in November 2005. There have been scores of food safety scandals in China, and the most recent ones have involved expired poultry products sold to U.S. fast food restaurants based in China. Now, we have FSIS moving forward to implement this ill-conceived decision, and it has not even audited the Chinese food safety system in more than 20 months, in direct contradiction to what it promised it would do to protect U.S. consumers. The election was not even a day old before it became apparent to us that the Obama administration is charging ahead with its flawed trade agenda.
The timing of this announcement coincides with the China International Food Safety and Quality Conference and Expo that is currently being held in Shanghai. FSIS’ equivalency determination for Chinese poultry has been the subject of a nearly decade’s old controversy, primarily because of China’s weak food safety system. FSIS found China’s poultry processing food safety system to be equivalent to that of the U.S. in April 2006 and reaffirmed that decision on Aug. 30, 2013. In its August 2013 reaffirmation, FSIS stated that it was basing its decision on a March 2013 audit it had conducted of four Chinese poultry processing facilities. The agency also stated that it would conduct annual audits of the Chinese food safety system to ensure that our food safety standards were being enforced for processed poultry exported to the U.S. But, as of this date, no such audit has been conducted by FSIS inspection personnel since March 2013, so the agency’s promises are questionable at best.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
A middle-aged married couple in China was diagnosed with pneumonic plague, a highly infectious disease similar to bubonic plague, which ravaged Europe in the middle ages, as CNN reported.
Dairy aisles have exploded with milk and milk alternative options over the past few years, and choosing the healthiest milk isn't just about the fat content.
Whether you're looking beyond cow's milk for health reasons or dietary preferences or simply want to experiment with different options, you may wonder which type of milk is healthiest for you.
At least 1,688 dams across the U.S. are in such a hazardous condition that, if they fail, could force life-threatening floods on nearby homes, businesses, infrastructure or entire communities, according to an in-depth analysis of public records conducted by the the Associated Press.
By Sabrina Kessler
Far-reaching allegations about how a climate-sinning American multinational could shamelessly lie to the public about its wrongdoing mobilized a small group of New York students on a cold November morning. They stood in front of New York's Supreme Court last week to follow the unprecedented lawsuit against ExxonMobil.
By Alex Robinson
Leah Garcés used to hate poultry farmers.
The animal rights activist, who opposes factory farming, had an adversarial relationship with chicken farmers until around five years ago, when she sat down to listen to one. She met a poultry farmer called Craig Watts in rural North Carolina and learned that the problems stemming from factory farming extended beyond animal cruelty.
Temperatures plunged rapidly across the U.S. this week and around 70 percent of the population is expected to experience temperatures around freezing Wednesday.