Why Did the Chicken Make You Sick?
January 28, 2015 8:49 AM   Subscribe

A Bug In The System Late one night in September of 2013, Rick Schiller awoke in bed with his right leg throbbing. Schiller, who is in his fifties, lives in San Jose, California. He had been feeling ill all week, and, as he reached under the covers, he found his leg hot to the touch. He struggled to sit upright, then turned on a light and pulled back the sheet. “My leg was about twice the normal size, maybe even three times,” he told me. “And it was hard as a rock, and bright purple.” (From The New Yorker. Warning: terrible in almost every way.)
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 (68 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
 
Finally, a counter-weight to the Pizza link from earlier this morning. To the people who were complaining about that post making them hungry, this article is your cure!
posted by surazal at 8:57 AM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


If "better tasting meat" isn't a selfish enough reason to responsibly source one's meat, how about minimizing the chance of ONE'S LEG SWELLING TO THE POINT THAT IT MIGHT BURST IN A SHOWER OF CHUNKY MEATLIKE EFFLUVIUM?
posted by cmoj at 9:01 AM on January 28, 2015 [9 favorites]


MetaFilter: Warning: terrible in almost every way.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 9:01 AM on January 28, 2015 [17 favorites]


pain is just well-being and normal function leaving your body
posted by thelonius at 9:02 AM on January 28, 2015 [37 favorites]


Reading this while shoving chicken sausage into my gullet!
posted by ReeMonster at 9:08 AM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


I am about as Big-Government Liberal as you can get, but this is some bullshit:
In the U.S., responsibility for food safety is divided among fifteen federal agencies. The most important, in addition to the F.S.I.S., is the Food and Drug Administration, in the Department of Health and Human Services. In theory, the line between these two should be simple: the F.S.I.S. inspects meat and poultry; the F.D.A. covers everything else. In practice, that line is hopelessly blurred. Fish are the province of the F.D.A.—except catfish, which falls under the F.S.I.S. Frozen cheese pizza is regulated by the F.D.A., but frozen pizza with slices of pepperoni is monitored by the F.S.I.S. Bagel dogs are F.D.A.; corn dogs, F.S.I.S. The skin of a link sausage is F.D.A., but the meat inside is F.S.I.S.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:11 AM on January 28, 2015 [17 favorites]


Walmart has thighs on sale! (jk)
posted by j_curiouser at 9:17 AM on January 28, 2015


Good freaking grief. I'm shocked that he didn't lose the leg.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:26 AM on January 28, 2015


Hmm...maybe I'll watch Slither again tonight.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 9:27 AM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Federal law permits a certain level of salmonella contamination in raw meat. But when federal limits are breached, and officials believe that a recall is necessary, their only option is to ask the producer to remove the product voluntarily. Even then, officials may only request a recall when they have proof that the meat is already making customers sick. As evidence, the F.S.I.S. typically must find a genetic match between the salmonella in a victim’s body and the salmonella in a package of meat that is still in the victim’s possession, with its label still attached. If the patient has already eaten the meat, discarded the package, or removed the label, the link becomes difficult to make, and officials can’t request a voluntary recall.
This quote starts out with an eye-opener, and rushes ever onward to outrageous. The system is fucked up.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 9:28 AM on January 28, 2015 [25 favorites]


Finally, on July 3, 2014, more than a year after the outbreak began, officials at the F.S.I.S. announced a genetic match that would allow the agency to request a recall. Foster Farms executives agreed to withdraw the fresh chicken produced in its California facilities during a six-day period in March of that year. All other Foster Farms chicken would remain in distribution.

Good grief. Talk about closing the barn door a stinkin' year after the horse got out.
posted by Gelatin at 9:32 AM on January 28, 2015 [7 favorites]


The system is fucked up.


This is by design. Something, something, job creators.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 9:32 AM on January 28, 2015 [30 favorites]


Well, this article won't show up on Reddit. Why? NO PICTURES!

It's not a good thing when you get a reaction out of a doctor. Most doctors are so bored they dream about zebras while getting nothing but but horses all day long, so when a doctor gasps at the size of your leg you know you are in for it.

There was recently a big case surrounding some Iowa poultry farmers that knowingly put tainted meat into the food supply for years. I'm not a death penalty proponent, and this is partly why, because if I were this is the kind of crime I'd use it on. Instead these dangerous immoral asshats will be lucky if they do a year.

I think the laws need to be updated so they could be charged with negligence or some sort of attempted homicide or something. No one they know died from this, but there's no way to prove that. That many people sick, how many just died and no one knew it was the egg that killed grandma?
posted by cjorgensen at 9:34 AM on January 28, 2015 [8 favorites]


So...is there a system in the US that works efficiently and quickly and humanely and doesn't have fucked up outcomes built right into its structure?
posted by Steely-eyed Missile Man at 9:35 AM on January 28, 2015 [7 favorites]


I remember when it hit the news that contaminated Jack-In-The-Box burgers had killed four people. It was a huge story; there was nothing else in the news. I thought, 'Well, they're going out of business, and good riddance.'

The next day I walked past a Jack-In-The-Box that was a few blocks from my apartment. It was full, and since it was a passably nice day, there were people sitting and eating their shitburgers outside, under the umbrellas.

Makes it difficult to muster one's energy for railing against The System. It is the way it is because it's generally acceptable to people.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 9:49 AM on January 28, 2015 [4 favorites]


I'm Canadian so I don't see them that often but to this day I always feel iffy when walking past a Jack-in-the-Box. I can't not remember that news story.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 9:59 AM on January 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


For those interested in keeping up to date on food safety, updates on recalls, notices of non-compliance letters, etc, add Food Safety News to your RSS feed readers.
posted by notyou at 10:00 AM on January 28, 2015 [7 favorites]


For the record, Jack-in-the-Box became an industry leader in meat safety practices following that tragedy.
posted by notyou at 10:05 AM on January 28, 2015 [11 favorites]


I am about as Big-Government Liberal as you can get, but this is some bullshit:

In the U.S., responsibility for food safety is divided among fifteen federal agencies. The most important, in addition to the F.S.I.S., is the Food and Drug Administration, in the Department of Health and Human Services. In theory, the line between these two should be simple: the F.S.I.S. inspects meat and poultry; the F.D.A. covers everything else. In practice, that line is hopelessly blurred. Fish are the province of the F.D.A.—except catfish, which falls under the F.S.I.S. Frozen cheese pizza is regulated by the F.D.A., but frozen pizza with slices of pepperoni is monitored by the F.S.I.S. Bagel dogs are F.D.A.; corn dogs, F.S.I.S. The skin of a link sausage is F.D.A., but the meat inside is F.S.I.S.


I'm not sure "big government" is really a good way to frame this. I mean, this is the kind of thing that happens when government is "big", but it's not clear what the solution is, and smaller government (read: less regulation/inspection of food products) is not the solution. More efficient government could be, but it's not particularly obvious how to get there from here. Situations like this usually arise from the intersection of laws that are not perfectly clear (because no law is, no one thought about the exact status of catfish when defining the purview of the FDA or whatever, until the 2008 and 2014 farm bills which as far as I can tell just created a controversial mess rather than solving anything) with a judicial system that approaches things on a very case-by-case basis, with special interests that will lobby their micro-interest to death (this happened with the catfish), sometimes combined with bureaucratic turf wars (also happened with the catfish).

It might seem like consolidating responsibility for "food" into a single agency would solve all this, but it really won't -- it'll just create now definitional issues and new overlapping areas. (For example, both USDA/FSIS and FDA currently regulate many non-food items, some of which have something to do with the food chain, some of which don't. And product labeling cuts across many areas, brings in other agencies, etc.) It might seem like providing clear legislative guidance on issues that become complex would be the solution. But as far as I can tell this hasn't actually worked very well for the catfish(/fish) situation, which has been an issue for something like 10 years, and several successive farm bills attempted (in a somewhat muddled way) to do something about it. Think about the DHS -- has this really been a win for government efficiency?

From what I know about inspection regimes (which is more about advertising and product labeling than food, I admit), I would tend to think that the overall problem is actually lack of funding, combined with too tight of a connection between the political appointees and the industries their agencies regulate. Well, and of course the huge amount of money pouring in from special interests that has led to these situations.
posted by advil at 10:19 AM on January 28, 2015 [17 favorites]


Ok but wrt the listeria canteloupes (and this could very well be better as an askme BUT): how the hell is the consumer reasonably supposed to clean fruit and veg and other things to be eaten uncooked at home? I don't have an antimicrobial wash. I have water and soap and the stuff I clean the bathroom mildew with, which I don't want on my food. Most of the time I just say WHATEVS and eat fruit unwashed in the hopes of developing a mighty and unstoppable immune system.
posted by poffin boffin at 10:25 AM on January 28, 2015 [11 favorites]


Also, here's some useful backstory on the catfish example. (There's a ton of reporting on this case easily found, also.)
posted by advil at 10:33 AM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Here's a guide to washing fresh produce and vegetables from Colorado State University Extension that seems easy enough to implement.

After reading the story, I think someone needs to develop and market a test kit for consumers to test their purchases before cooking.
posted by mogget at 10:49 AM on January 28, 2015 [8 favorites]


I was wondering why Foster Farms sponsored a bowl game this season:
The game, previously known as both the Fight Hunger Bowl and the Emerald Bowl, will now be sponsored by Foster Farms as the Foster Farms Bowl ...
I guess they thought they needed the PR.

And they're right.
posted by jamjam at 10:59 AM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


advil: "I would tend to think that the overall problem is actually lack of funding, combined with too tight of a connection between the political appointees and the industries their agencies regulate."

No, you are right. It's not really a big/small government thing. I guess I just meant I tend to defend governmental regulation and oversight, but it's hard to defend a system that has two completely separate and differently empowered branches of government overseeing different kinds of pizzas based on their toppings.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:01 AM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


"Schiller remembered that he’d bought two packages of raw Foster Farms chicken thighs just before the illness. He’d eaten a few pieces from one of the packages; the other package was still in his freezer."

I think eating a few pieces of raw chicken was probably his big mistake.
posted by Clustercuss at 11:01 AM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


Talk about closing the barn door a stinkin' year after the horse got out.

And exploded.
posted by The Bellman at 11:04 AM on January 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


This was an interesting article. Not being from the States, I have always wondered why litigation, as well as social engineering-via-legislation plays such a big role in the country. Now I have an idea as to why.
posted by Nevin at 11:15 AM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


And exploded.

I heard that as the line Enrico Colantoni delivered in Galaxy Quest and chuckled.
posted by Gelatin at 11:15 AM on January 28, 2015 [8 favorites]


Also, here's some useful backstory on the catfish example.

Money quote:
With food safety regulation already highly fragmented, disjointed, and overlapping, why would Congress add to the problem by singling out a certain sector? The idea was to give domestic catfish producers a leg up on foreign producers, who have been flooding the U.S. market with catfish, or catfish-like species (there is no settled definition of “catfish”).
So you have a system handling a general class of things, and move responsibility for one specific case to another part of the system hoping to achieve a side effect. And then you wonder why you have an unreliable system failing in unexpected and dangerous ways!
posted by Dr Dracator at 11:30 AM on January 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


Federal law permits a certain level of salmonella contamination in raw meat. But when federal limits are breached, and officials believe that a recall is necessary, their only option is to ask the producer to remove the product voluntarily. Even then, officials may only request a recall when they have proof that the meat is already making customers sick. As evidence, the F.S.I.S. typically must find a genetic match between the salmonella in a victim’s body and the salmonella in a package of meat that is still in the victim’s possession, with its label still attached. If the patient has already eaten the meat, discarded the package, or removed the label, the link becomes difficult to make, and officials can’t request a voluntary recall.

This is how Cadbury's in the UK got caught shipping salmonella flavoured chocolate. Once they made the link between Cadbury's and a distributed outbreak of genetically similar Salmonella that hospitalized more than a dozen people they found internal documents that indicated that Cadbury's executives knew about the salmonella contamination for 6 months.

Food can be scary.
posted by srboisvert at 11:33 AM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Dr Dracator: "catfish-like species (there is no settled definition of “catfish”)"

*shudder* Makes me think of "malk".
posted by Rock Steady at 11:35 AM on January 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


I heard that as the line Enrico Colantoni delivered in Galaxy Quest and chuckled.

That's wonderful because that's how I heard it too, but I was pretty sure I was on my own. I had actually written "And turned inside out . . . and exploded" but I decided that was too weird. Man I love MeFi.
posted by The Bellman at 11:42 AM on January 28, 2015 [5 favorites]


I am only going to do this to add some levity to a thread that is creeping me right the frack out:

Metafilter: A SHOWER OF CHUNKY MEATLIKE EFFLUVIUM
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:56 AM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


I thought this was about gout from the pull quote and title. Now I never want to cook chicken again.
posted by infinitewindow at 11:59 AM on January 28, 2015


Not that I'm blaming the fellow in the FPP link for getting sick, but I am genuinely curious: is there anything he could have done in prep to not contract the salmonella strain?
posted by codacorolla at 11:59 AM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


Now I never want to cook chicken again.

Really? I would think that uncooked chicken would be worse.
posted by JiBB at 12:05 PM on January 28, 2015 [11 favorites]


I had no idea that there were literally no standards for contamination of chicken parts. Every package contaminated with salmonella? Welp. American housewives are not stupid, the judge said, they know meat can be contaminated.

So the question is, how much do I need to cook this stuff to make it safe? Pressure cook everything, or nuke it from orbit? (It's the only way to be sure.)
posted by RedOrGreen at 12:21 PM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


I have to research this kind of stuff for work. There's a chart here [PDF] on FDA vs. USDA jurisdiction. My favorite, the FDA does closed-faced sandwiches and the USDA does open-faced sandwiches.
posted by interplanetjanet at 12:25 PM on January 28, 2015 [5 favorites]


"American housewives" may not be stupid, but chalk me up as a grown-ass American woman who had no fucking idea that garden variety cuts of meat—the plastic-wrapped packages of chicken thighs and pork chops that fill local grocery aisles—weren't being held to any contamination standards whatsoever.
posted by evidenceofabsence at 12:29 PM on January 28, 2015 [12 favorites]


It's 14 cents a bird to vaccinate chickens against salmonella as they do in Europe.

1/2 to 2/3 of US farmers do it.

The remainder think we should handle chicken and eggs as biohazards on our cutting boards and mixing bowls.
posted by sebastienbailard at 12:29 PM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Two things I'm not clear on:

1. Why is there a requirement of a genetic match or anything else to request a recall? My understanding is that these agencies only have the power to request that the company issue a recall and can't actually require it. If all they're doing is saying "Hey, looks like there might be a problem here, do you think maybe you can do something?" it seems like there should be no particular requirements for that, since the request is not actually requiring the company to do anything and is not costing the company anything.

2. Why was it just thighs? How is chicken processed so that only one body part is contaminated? Are chickens sitting on little contaminated chairs so their thighs (but not drumsticks, wings, or breasts) rest on salmonella? How does this work?
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 12:29 PM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


Another outsider perspective, US meat seems incredibly cheap to my Canadian eyes. It scares me, how is it possible? I'm guessing subsidies, but I wouldn't be surprised if had to do with regulatory requirements that are absent in the US.

The fact is, food inspection is one of those pesky government oversights that companies don't want. They can't be trusted to watch themselves (they are often left to, as the government couldn't reasonably inspect everyone all the time). Food inspection is something libertarians, small government enthusiasts, and conservatives are willing to cut. There is always a risk in food production and cooking and the less inspection going on increases the risk of illness in the general population. I'm perfectly happy to limit corporate freedom with regulation to improve public health, but I'm a socialist. I do however, have to laugh at people who have no appreciation for the everyday safety federal regulations provide us. Sure the rules and responsibilities are confusing and inefficient, but it very definitely is better than nothing.

If only I had a penguin my guess for 2. is that the washing or processing station for thighs had quality control issues. All meat producers have to deal with bacteria and fecal matter in virtually every part of meat they process.
posted by Gor-ella at 12:55 PM on January 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


This plus the (possibly apocryphal) story I heard from a friend about a guy who got scratched by a chicken on his arm and, as a result of bacterial infection or something, suffered the unfortunate condition of CHICKEN-SMELLING ARM from that day forward has me really understanding where Werner Herzog is coming from on these things.
posted by invitapriore at 12:58 PM on January 28, 2015


Another outsider perspective, US meat seems incredibly cheap to my Canadian eyes. It scares me, how is it possible? I'm guessing subsidies, but I wouldn't be surprised if had to do with regulatory requirements that are absent in the US.

We probably shouldn't be too cocky. From Wikipedia:
On August 27, 2008, The Globe and Mail reported a leaked Conservative cabinet document which outlined plans for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to give the food industry a greater role in the inspection process. However, some of the plans have been in place since March 31, 2008 according to a CFIA manager and an official from the union that represents the federal inspectors.[9]

At the Maple Leaf plant behind the Listeria outbreak, a single federal inspector was relegated to auditing company paperwork and had to deal with several other plants, the manager and the union official said, contradicting the impression that officials had left last week that full-time watchdogs were on-site. Under the new system, federal inspectors do random product tests only three or four times a year at any given plant, and meat packers are required to test each type of product only once a month. Under the old system, inspectors had a more hands-on role on the plant floor, did more of the tests themselves and had more freedom to investigate, said former CFIA inspector.[9]

Prime Minister Stephen Harper rejected any suggestions that the federal government is not doing enough. The Conservative government's changes are the subject of heated controversy as academics and the opposition express concerns over the few details that have emerged so far. The 2008 budget indicated the CFIA was asked to find savings to pay for new programs. The leaked document indicated savings would be found by transferring some meat-inspection duties to industry.[9]
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 1:00 PM on January 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


We probably shouldn't be too cocky.

I see what you did there.
posted by Gelatin at 1:05 PM on January 28, 2015 [5 favorites]


Yeah food inspection in Canada has been cut back from the 2000s levels, both federally and in (at least some of ) the provinces. Most recently, the CFIA saw major cutbacks in the 2012 federal budget.
posted by bonehead at 1:24 PM on January 28, 2015


So who wants to know about all the fun stuff that could be in your cheese?
(I work with food safety and quality in a cheese factory, hee)
posted by Jalliah at 1:36 PM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


Ooh! ME ME ME!

I assume it's things like maggots?
posted by Lord_Pall at 1:41 PM on January 28, 2015


Uh... About That.
posted by cheap paper at 1:42 PM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


Whenever "questionable" cheese comes up in discussion I always think of this.
posted by juiceCake at 1:57 PM on January 28, 2015


Uh... About That.

Why? WHY???
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 1:58 PM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Uh... About That.

I told someone recently that that was the only food in the world which I'd already decided, before tasting, that I would absolutely positively never ever eat.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 2:12 PM on January 28, 2015


I've just been cleaning out and refreshing first aid kits all morning and now my eyes are itchy.
posted by turbid dahlia at 3:57 PM on January 28, 2015


cheap paper: "Uh... About That."

WOW MONEY QUOTE: "When disturbed, the larvae can launch themselves for distances up to 15 cm (6 in)."
posted by invitapriore at 4:02 PM on January 28, 2015 [2 favorites]


what, am i supposed to be impressed? i can launch myself at least a whole foot from inside a cheese. dumb lazy maggots.
posted by poffin boffin at 4:27 PM on January 28, 2015 [5 favorites]


Apropos of nothing, but the little girl mentioned in the article as having received the largest individual poisoning settlement ever -- Brianne Kiner -- is my workout partner's sister. She came out of that coma with rheumatoid arthritis, type I diabetes, and fructose malabsorption disorder, along with several other less chronic conditions. $15.6 million seems like a paltry sum on balance.
posted by KathrynT at 4:56 PM on January 28, 2015 [9 favorites]


At the Maple Leaf plant behind the Listeria outbreak, a single federal inspector was relegated to auditing company paperwork and had to deal with several other plants, the manager and the union official said, contradicting the impression that officials had left last week that full-time watchdogs were on-site. Under the new system, federal inspectors do random product tests only three or four times a year at any given plant, and meat packers are required to test each type of product only once a month. Under the old system, inspectors had a more hands-on role on the plant floor, did more of the tests themselves and had more freedom to investigate, said former CFIA inspector.[9]

25 years ago when I worked in the Molsons brewery on Fleet Street in Toronto they knew a couple of days in advance when the inspectors were coming and detailed an entire shift of overtime to clean up. I assumed they had someone on the inside who tipped them off but maybe the protocol was to give advance notice.
posted by srboisvert at 5:08 PM on January 28, 2015


srboisvert: "I assumed they had someone on the inside who tipped them off but maybe the protocol was to give advance notice."

That's what I've always suspected as well. I've never worked with food, but every job I've ever had that included outsiders coming in to inspect things, we always knew in advance when it was going to happen.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 5:36 PM on January 28, 2015


I heard that as the line Enrico Colantoni delivered in Galaxy Quest and chuckled.

That's wonderful because that's how I heard it too,


Guys, please refresh your memories. The lines belong to Teb, played by Jed Rees.
posted by maudlin at 6:00 PM on January 28, 2015 [3 favorites]


So, uh, who else had chicken for dinner tonight?
posted by The corpse in the library at 8:21 PM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


Another outsider perspective, US meat seems incredibly cheap to my Canadian eyes. It scares me, how is it possible? I'm guessing subsidies, but I wouldn't be surprised if had to do with regulatory requirements that are absent in the US.

We probably shouldn't be too cocky. From Wikipedia:


Yes, it was quite terrible. During the listeriosis crisis the federal Ag minister, Gerry Ritz was quoted as saying "This is like a death by a thousand cuts. Or should I say cold cuts."

What a jerk. I attended a banquet where he was a speaker and to warm up the audience he "joked" that the writ had been dropped and the prime minister had called a snap election.

His main claim to fame was blowing up the Canadian Wheat Board.

The simplest thing to do is to avoid processed meats (they are bad for you anyway) and ground hamburger. I never thought chicken would be this bad, though.
posted by Nevin at 8:43 PM on January 28, 2015


As someone who eats a lot of chicken, I have to say that this paragraph is incredibly disturbing to read:

Each year, contaminated food sickens forty-eight million Americans, of whom a hundred and twenty-eight thousand are hospitalized, and three thousand die. Many of the deadliest pathogens, such as E. coli and listeria, are comparatively rare; many of the most widespread, such as norovirus, are mercifully mild. Salmonella is both common and potentially lethal. It infects more than a million Americans each year, sending nineteen thousand victims to the hospital, and killing more people than any other food-borne pathogen. A recent U.S.D.A study found that twenty-four per cent of all cut-up chicken parts are contaminated by some form of salmonella. Another study, by Consumer Reports, found that more than a third of chicken breasts tainted with salmonella carried a drug-resistant strain.

Maybe I shoul justd say "screw low carb" and go back to living off of pasta.
posted by litera scripta manet at 8:58 PM on January 28, 2015 [1 favorite]


If the patient has already eaten the meat, discarded the package, or removed the label, the link becomes difficult to make, and officials can’t request a voluntary recall.

Now that I've learned how absurd these policies are, I'm tempted to start a policy of retaining the package, label, and one sample of all the chicken that I cook for at least a week after I consume it.

Of course, in reality, I'll probably just wake up tomorrow, pretend that I never read this article, and go back to chowing down on the delicious chicken dish that I cooked last night.
posted by litera scripta manet at 9:05 PM on January 28, 2015


Guys, please refresh your memories. The lines belong to Teb, played by Jed Rees.

I stand corrected.
posted by Gelatin at 3:29 AM on January 29, 2015


Maybe I shoul justd say "screw low carb" and go back to living off of pasta.

There are a lot of low-carb (although not no-carb) non-meat foods. Whether anyone would want to eat them for a long period of time is not mine to say, but the foods exist. If I were to go back to eating meat, I'd probably still avoid chicken (and pork).
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 4:05 AM on January 29, 2015


So...is there a system in the US that works efficiently and quickly and humanely and doesn't have fucked up outcomes built right into its structure?

Medicare?
So long as there is a large involvement on the part of private industry in the creation of regulations and standards and their enforcement, though...no.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:16 AM on January 29, 2015 [2 favorites]


> e simplest thing to do is to avoid processed meats (they are bad for you anyway) and ground hamburger.

That's not enough, though. At least one of the kids who died in an E. coli outbreak in Washington didn't eat the hamburger; the E. coli was passed on to him by someone who worked at Jack in the Box.
posted by The corpse in the library at 7:03 AM on January 29, 2015


So...is there a system in the US that works efficiently and quickly and humanely and doesn't have fucked up outcomes built right into its structure?

You can have two. Pick.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:16 AM on January 29, 2015 [2 favorites]


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