Food Inspector Coming to Fruit Stand Near You
April 27, 2009 by Bob Livingston
Under the guise of making sure our food is safe the heavy hand of government is about to clamp down on everyone who grows, transports or sells produce, livestock or poultry.
Two bills, one in the House and one in the Senate, have been introduced that will stifle everyone involved with growing and distributing food products—from grandpa and his small garden plot and grandma’s homemade preserves, to roadside fruit stands to farmers’ markets to small cattle growers to chicken farmers.
Named the Food Safety Modernization Act, HR 875 calls for the establishment of the Food Safety Administration within the Department of Health and Human Services. The bill assigns Federal regulators the task of ensuring that food producers, processors and distributors prevent and minimize food safety hazards like food-borne illnesses and contamination from bacteria, chemicals, toxins, viruses, parasites, prions, physical hazards or other human pathogens.
The legislation calls for regulation on slaughterhouses, seafood processing plants, establishments that process, store, hold or transport all categories of food products before delivery for retail sale, farms, ranches, orchards, vineyards, aquaculture facilities and confined animal-feeding operations.
Once enacted, every entity that falls under the jurisdiction of the legislation would be required to maintain records of all food products so the government can keep track of them in the event of contamination.
“Good,” you say, “I don’t want to eat any contaminated food.”
Not so fast, because when it comes to government legislation, what is not excluded from a bill is automatically included. And the legislation lays out no provision on the size and scope of what’s a farm, ranch, orchard or vineyard.
So grandpa can’t give away his vegetables without the proper paperwork. Show up at the local fruit stand and you’ll be handed a stack of forms to fill out before you can leave with your produce. Small cattle farmers can’t take their livestock to market.
And grandma, don’t give away any of that jam you made from pears off your pear trees because government inspectors may knock on the door and say, “Your papers, please!”
Don’t have your papers in order? It’ll cost you at least $1 million. That’s the fine for each violation of the act. And grandpa and grandma, you could also spend at least 10 years in prison.
This bill, and its companion Senate bill S 425, are designed to strip you of your right to grow your own food and put all food production in the hands of large agricultural companies like Monsanto, Archer Daniels Midland and Tyson.
Don’t believe it? HR 875 was introduced by Democrat Rep. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut. Her husband, Stanley Greenburg, just happens to be a Monsanto employee and he is expected to be chosen to lead the Food Safety Administration (FSA). Meanwhile, lobbyists for Monsanto, Archer Daniels Midland and Tyson are lobbying hard for S 425.
This legislation, in addition to endangering grandpa, grandma and the local fruit stand, will crush the small farmer under an avalanche of paperwork. While large food producing companies have the staff to handle the additional forms, small farmers—and small distribution centers—are working on already too-tight margins and would be unable to hire the staff needed to handle the paperwork.
Big food producers like Monsanto, Archer Daniels Midland and Tyson are controlling most of the food we get and contaminating it with steroids and drugs—things our bodies don’t need.
But don’t try to grow your own organic food. Your “papers” may not be in order when the new FSA thugs knock on your door.