Trump’s USDA Wants to Make Pork Processing Faster—And More Dangerous
In a typical pork slaughterhouse, hog carcasses move down the conveyor belt at an average rate of around 977 per hour, or about 16 per minute. Workers tasked with disassembling these fast-moving 240-plus pound chunks of flesh endure high injury rates, which are likely even higher due to underreporting. Now the Trump Administration’s US Department of Agriculture is pushing an overhaul that could significantly speed up that already-frantic pace. In a Friday press release, the USDA announced its intention to approve a new system for hog slaughter that reduces the role of USDA inspectors on the kill line, giving company employees direct oversight duties. Under this alternative slaughter system, pork companies would “determine their own evisceration line speeds,” the USDA notes.
Washington, DC, USA
Issue: Food Safety Typology: Policies