US Department Of Agriculture Ends Ban On Processed Chicken Products From China


On August 29th, the United States Department of Agriculture announced, albeit quietly, that it had lifted the ban on processed poultry products from China. What that means for consumers is that no longer will companies be required to list the country of origin for chicken in their products.  The New York Times published an article noting that “the chickens will still be raised in the U.S., Canada or Chile (the only countries approved by the USDA), but can be processed in China because USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) auditors have approved four Chinese poultry plants to start exporting processed poultry to the U.S.”  The Times article continued, “consumers eating chicken noodle soup from a can or chicken nuggets in a fast-food restaurant will not know if the chicken came from Chinese processing plants.”  This is particularly disturbing because the Department of Agriculture is charged with protecting US citizens from potentially unhealthy food.  Time and again the Chinese have demonstrated their inability to maintain the high standards those of us in the US have come to expect.  One need not look any further than the three babies who died and 6,200 others who were sickened by the same chemical that caused a massive pet food recall.  It’s so bad in China that most western countries had food shipped in during the Olympic Games.  Other than politics, there is simply no sound reasoning for allowing the Chinese to be able to send processed food products to the US without being able to make an educated decision about whether or not a parent would choose to purchase that product for their family.  In fact, the only logical reason for allowing this practice is because the USDA is fully aware that no concerned American parent would buy chicken processed in China.  Someone needs to intervene and get to the bottom of why this is being allowed to take place.  But until then, we should not be purchasing any chicken products unless the companies in question explicitly state that no Chinese processed chicken has been used in the production of their product.

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