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Tyson Really Does Not Want the Government Inspecting Its Beef

Plus, savor your bananas while you can, and more news to start your day

Three black cows in a field. Tyson

Consumer advocates are worried

Tyson, one of the biggest meatpackers in the country, is volleying to reduce the number of inspectors at one of its Kansas beef plants, requesting to use its own employees and not inspectors from the Department of Agriculture to make sure everything is up to code. The proposal, obtained by Food and Water Watch, argues that the beef industry has evolved over the recent years to include more “farm-to-table food safety, animal care and quality controls,” and that it should be waived from certain requirements.

The USDA is seriously considering Tyson’s request “as part of a broader overhaul of beef inspections that aims to shift quality control from government inspectors to factory workers,” writes NBC News, which is making consumer advocates nervous, especially since these decisions are often made without public input. Thomas Gremillion, director of food policy for the Consumer Federation of America, said “You can imagine some real horror scenarios if the inspection system breaks down for beef since E. coli is a particularly pernicious bug.” Something to think about in the grocery aisle!

And in other news...

  • Over 100 people were fired from a food processing plant in Mississippi after ICE raids were conducted there last week. [Slate]
  • There’s a good chance your favorite take-out place is a virtual restaurant. [NY Times]
  • Columbia has declared a state of emergency over a fungus that could make bananas go extinct. [Vice]
  • Good news! You can get non-tariffed Chinese frog meat until December, so stock up. [NPR]
  • Foodora—essentially DoorDash in Canada—has been trying to prevent its workers from unionizing by arguing they’re independent contractors and not employees. Sounds familiar. [CBC]
  • The iconic Gene’s Po-Boys in New Orleans is closing and being replaced by condos, another victim of the city’s rapid gentrification. [Vice]
  • The Roca brothers are opening a chocolate hotel. [Food & Wine]
  • Savory popsicles. Discuss. [The Takeout]

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