Farming Safety and Production

Farming Safety and Production

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Over a hundred years ago the idea of farming and food consumption was very different then it is today. Regulation, education about health, research and technology, food processing, marketing, and wholesale has changed the food industry and the agriculture itself. Before going to the market or grocery store meant going to your back yard where you knew where everything was being grown and how it was being taken care of. Nowadays the majority of people do not raise their own animals or grow their own vegetables they go to a big chain or even a smaller local store to buy their food. When it comes to food safely and food production large farms and small farms are being negatively affected in many different areas. The current issues dealing with food safely and food production are, because there are a few big plants running are production of food its causing nation wide food poisoning and contamination, the public wants more regulation and centralized on farms which is then putting financial pressure on local farms, feedlots for animals, and our food is subject to terrorist attacks because only more then half our nations food is produced in the same place. I believe the way to fix our problem is to be informed and get involved.
One of the main issues facing farming safety and production today is the fact that a few big plants are producing the mass majority of our food. Because our food is being produced, cleaned and handled in one place its causing nation wide poisoning and contamination of our meats and vegetables. For example, four companies produce eighty percent of Americans beef and one company produces thirty percent of our milk. (p.388) This means when an outbreak occurs it’s harder to re-call all of the produced because most stores all over the nation are selling the food. It also means that more people are going to be affected and become ill. If a local store were to sell bad spinach to five costumers in a small town its easier to control, manage, trace and inform those customers instead of have a large amount of people getting ill. Two hundred Americans in 26 states were sickened by spinach that had E. Coli. (p.388) The Center Disease Control for and Prevention approximation that our food supplies sickens 76 million, putting more than 300, 000 in the hospital and killing 5,000 Americans every year.

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(p.389) This many people getting sick and being effected by the food contamination is too many and needs to be handled. Food safely shouldn’t be a question or a problem but it is and something from with in the system needs to be changed. The government solution to the problem is this; instead of fixing the source of the problem like the feedlots they are nuking the meat. Which means sterilizing the manure rather then moving it from our food altogether (p. 388) Instead of producing clean meat that is okay for consumers to eat right away the meat is first contaminated and then the sterilized a.k.a processed before being sold. The problem with this is, it’s an easy fix. Its easier to use technology to fix this issue than it is to start of the root of the problem and change the way we raise our animals and the methods we use to grow our vegetables. Its called industry capitalism, finding new business ventures in a failure of something else. (p. 388) Everyone has a need for money and business but should the price of this be that our meat and vegetables are less than satisfactory? Businesses goals should be to produce the best quality product that is affordable and of course makes a profit instead of cheap, unhealthy and unsafe methods used to process the food they than sell to consumers. It’s the problem we face in many other areas of the produces, cheap and now other quality. Fix the route problem and there wont be things that need fixing. American consumers should be aware of what products they are purchasing and the effects they will have on them. If they don’t support the methods pay a little extra and but from a local store you do support and be informed and ask questions.
The out breaks of E. Coli and other contaminations has caused the public to call from more regulation and inspections of farms, plants, and the food that is being produced. (p.388) As it stands now, farms are virtually unregulated because before this there was no reason to worry about food safety on farms. Famers can do what they want if people aren’t getting sick was the main motto. (p. 388) This idea would be a valid one if people weren’t getting sick, but they are. Because of this out cry from for more regulation the U.S.D.A has fairly put regulatory requirements. This in turn is causing factories to shut down because they can’t afford the up keep with the regulations and it is causing local and regional plants to close as well. (p. 391) The U.S.D.A is saying that every huge plant, like giant slaughterhouses has to have a bathroom, a shower and an office for the used by inspectors but the smaller processing plant that slaughter local famers livestock will have to compile with theses rules as well. (p. 391) The problem is these small places can’t afford these amities so they send their meat to large slaughterhouse that has raised their prices to process meat to compensate. So you have these large plants raising prices if they aren’t going out of business themselves and smaller places going out of business or sending there meat to large plants where they can produce more for less causing contamination on a larger scale.
To fix the problem the government should set up regulations not on the plants but on the feedlots. The animals are standing in their manure all day eating gain, which turns a cow’s rumen into a habit for E. Coli. (p. 298) People who care about there buying and the food choices should get involved with this issue. Animals should have a life so to speak before they are killed.
If consumers really want a change in what they eating and what is being sold they need to get involved in the issues. Talking to local government and state wide government would help the issue, just getting your option out there. The current issues dealing with food safely and food production wont change if people aren’t passionate and interested enough to get involved and change them.

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