Sprawl-Busters Newsflash Blog - Anti-Sprawl news since 1998.
Subscribe to Sprawl-Busters Blog Follow Sprawl Busters on Twitter
Occupy Walmart & Order Al's Books Movies Newsflash! The Case Against Sprawl Home Towns Not Home Depot Victories Your Battles About Us Contact Us  

recent news

List articles
by the month:

2018
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2017
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2016
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2015
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2014
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2013
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2012
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2011
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2010
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2009
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2008
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2007
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2006
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2005
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2004
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2003
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2002
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2001
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

2000
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

1999
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC

1998
JAN FEB MAR
APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP
OCT NOV DEC


Search database by text:

2000-07-17
Beatrice, NE. Wal-Mart's irradiation problem

If you ever saw it, you would even say it glows! Here's the a press release put out in May about irradiated food being test-marketed at Wal-Mart in Nebraska: "Civic Leaders and Public Citizen Tell Wal-Mart "Nebraskans Won't Buy Meat Treated with Radiation!" (Beatrice, NE) Concerned citizens including livestock producers, food inspectors and Wal-Mart customers joined Public Citizen and Nebraska civic leaders in a news conference and rally objecting to Wal-Mart's proposal to sell irradiated meat. The event was held in Beatrice Inn, near the Beatrice Wal-Mart Supercenter where irradiated meat is scheduled to be test-marketed. Food irradiation (also known as cold pasteurization or electronic pasteurization) exposes food to high levels of ionizing radiation to kill bacteria and extend shelf-life. Irradiation can create new chemicals, called unique radiolytic products, which have not been studied or adequately identified. The long-term health effects of consuming irradiated food are equally untested. Scientists have demonstrated that the ingestion of irradiated food may also result in chromosomal damage and reproductive dysfunction, among other problems. Carcinogens including benzene and toluene may also be produced in irradiated food. The Food & Drug Administration declared food irradiation safe using mathematical calculations supported by only five animal studies of disputed validity, conducted in the 1960s and 1970s. "Neither consumers nor US livestock producers are well-served by the irradiation of meat," said Dr. Sally Herrin, president of Nebraska Citizen Action Network. "Irradiation is detrimental to meat quality, including taste and nutrition, and introduces potentially-dangerous new chemicals into the meat we feed our families. It's inferior to current steam sterilization technology, and a poor substitute for responsible meat-cutting practices that remove fecal matter, sores or tumors off contaminated carcasses." Mike Callicrate, a Kansas rancher and cattle-feeder, and spokesman for the Cattlemen Legal Fund agreed, "Instead of keeping manure off the meat by insisting on better, safer production processes, IBP, Farmland and other major meat packers want to use irradiation to make manure safe to eat. This is treating the symptom to avoid addressing the cause." IBP and Farmland are two of the country's largest meat processing facilities.[A representative of the Midwest Council of Food Inspector Locals also spoke out against food irradiation. "Irradiating meat is no substitute for an effective food inspection system," he said, expressing concern with the government's attempt to allow meat companies to self inspect meat quality at slaughter houses and packing plants.] Another problem with irradiated meat is the threat to small farmers in the United States. Family farmers and small food producers are finding it near impossible to compete economically with corporate factory farms. The extended shelf-life of irradiated food will help foreign meat producers to drive the small American farmer out of business. "In the long run, irradiation will enable the meat traders to move livestock production overseas, where labor and environmental standards are lower," said Herrin. "They want to raise it offshore, slaughter it offshore, package it offshore and send it on a slowboat back for sale in the US." Most American consumers share the views expressed at the news conference. A 1999 poll commissioned by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) and Center for Science in the Public Interest found that 88.6 percent of Americans want irradiated food labeled. A 1997 CBS News poll found that 77 percent of Americans would not buy irradiated food. In February, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) legalized the irradiation of raw meat and meat products such as ground beef, steaks and pork chops. Just last week, Huisken Meats began distributing irradiated hamburger patties for sale in Minnesota. Jim Freeman, manager of the Beatrice Wal-Mart Supercenter, admitted last month that his store would also participate in the test-marketing of irradiated meat. "Irradiation translates into big profits for Wal-Mart, but something entirely different for consumers," said Wenonah Hauter, director of Public Citizen's Critical Mass Energy & Environment Program. "Corporate agribusiness has convinced the government to abandon its protective role, allowing companies like Wal-Mart to use food irradiation to extend the shelf-life of meat and mask the unhygienic conditions in which animals are raised, slaughtered and processed." Under the USDA's labeling requirements, irradiated meat must be labeled as such if sold "fresh" in stores. However, this requirement does not apply to processed foods or meat dishes served in restaurants and cafeterias. Consumers therefore will not know when they are eating irradiated meat - - unless they ask the chef. Bon apetit!

What you can do: Wal-Mart is missing out on an important public relations initiative. How about TV ads that say: "Wal-Mart -- We're Making Manure Safe to Eat" Or: "Wal-Mart's Irradiated Food: The comments have been positively glowing." If you want Wal-Mar to stop carring irradiated food, contact the company at www.walmart.com and ask them to "steer clear of nuclear steers".










 
 
"Norman has become the guru of the anti-Wal-Mart movement" ~ 60 Minutes

info@sprawl-busters.com
Strategic Planning ~ Field Operations
Voter Campaigns 
21 Grinnell St, Greenfield ~ MA 01301
(413) 772-6289