In 2000, 40% of chickens sent to stores from seven plants was contaminated.
March 2, 2001 2:15 AM   Subscribe

In 2000, 40% of chickens sent to stores from seven plants was contaminated. And this is just the one we've heard about. Between stories like this and the animal diseases in Europe, meat is looking less and less appetizing. It looks like what the food industry gets away with may finally be too outrageous to be ignored. Not to mention whether non-meat foods are processed with any more attention to sanitation than meats. Of course if they can get away with cutting costs this way, they will.
posted by aflakete (13 comments total)
Cheap food will, by default be produced cheaply. The consumer shops where their food is cheapest, the retailers squeeze the producers to cut costs, the producers develop ever more intensive farming and processing practices.....the result? Well, the results are difficult to predict but you can bet they're not likely to be happy healthy animals giving tasty, healthy meat.
But hey, it's cheap meat we want and lots of it. So thats OK.
posted by Markb at 5:32 AM on March 2, 2001

pus, sores, scabs... lovely.

So chicken soup for a cold is really more like hair of the dog?

Hooters, anyone?
posted by auntbunny at 5:47 AM on March 2, 2001

I read an interesting book a while back, Spoiled, by Nichols Fox. She details quite a few of the incidents of widespread food contamination, and more than a few are vegetable-related, as well.
Which is not to let meat producers off the hook. But it does go back to what MarkB said. If we demand cheap, out-of-season food available at all times, we will pay the price. Whether it's nvCJD or hepatitis...
posted by methylsalicylate at 6:17 AM on March 2, 2001

There is a simple solution to this problem that they don't always let you in on when they do those "How safe is the meat you buy?" reports on the evening news.

Don't eat your chicken raw. Cook it. Problem solved.

posted by bondcliff at 6:27 AM on March 2, 2001

Don't eat your chicken raw. Cook it. Problem solved.

The amount of cooking to make some factory-farmed chicken edible would most likely make it indigestible.

Same results from a British survey.

The real solution: treat chicken as the luxury meat it was to your parents' generation, and stick to (non-GM) tofu for generic protein.
posted by holgate at 10:53 AM on March 2, 2001

Sorry, I prefer to have my protein come with flavor.

posted by bondcliff at 11:06 AM on March 2, 2001

It's not the tastelessness of tofu that's the problem - it's pretty simple to add flavour to tofu. It's the texture. I've yet to eat tofu without knowing that I'm eating tofu, and that's a problem for me. I just don't like the way it feels.
posted by cCranium at 11:16 AM on March 2, 2001

I don't eat anything unless it cries out in pain when I kill it.
posted by bondcliff at 11:19 AM on March 2, 2001

But you can eat vegetables while they're still alive, causing, no doubt, intense if inaudible pain.
posted by muta at 11:51 AM on March 2, 2001

One o these days I need to start ensuring that all meat I eat is free-range and happy.

Partly this is because I've seen how striking the difference is between chicken-factory chickens and regular ones.

Chicken-plant chickens are genetically so warped in the direction of fast huge meat growth that they can't walk after a certain age.

I saw this at a farm I worked at a few years ago - It's pretty sad, seeing them sitting there, in a nice little pen, being pecked to death by the regular chickens (smaller, but able to live a reasonably high-quality life, for a chicken).

If I hadn't seen it myself, I might not have believed it.
posted by beth at 11:54 AM on March 2, 2001

For those interested in the subject of the state of mass meat processing, the book Fast Food Nation is a good (and disturbing) place to start.
posted by peterme at 12:02 PM on March 2, 2001

cC, try drying off your tofu with a paper towel then pan-frying it until it's a nice, golden brown.

Oh God, I just posted a cooking tip to MeFi... must lay low for a while...
posted by Avogadro at 12:02 PM on March 2, 2001

especially after forgetting to close the tag!
posted by cCranium at 1:06 PM on March 2, 2001

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