Iowa Public Television

 

Army corp under fire; feelots may contribute to food borne illnesses

posted on March 3, 2000


IN RURAL AMERICA THE PERSISTENT CHALLENGE OF HOW BEST TO MAINTAIN THE SAFETY OF AN IMPORTANT FARM PRODUCT RE-EMERGED. AND IT WAS ACCOMPANIED BY THE SEPARATE CONTROVERSY OVER HOW BEST TO MAINTAIN INFRASTRUCTURE THAT IS IMPORTANT TO THE RURAL ECONOMY WITHOUT COMPROMISING THE ENVIRONMENT. THAT TASK HASN'T BEEN MADE ANY EASIER BY HARSH CHARGES OF GOVERNMENT LYING.

THE ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS IS COMING UNDER FIRE FROM THE FEDERAL OFFICE OF SPECIAL COUNSEL. AN ARMY CORPS WHISTLE BLOWER HAS ACCUSED TOP BRASS OF MANIPULATING DATA TO SUPPORT AN EXPANSION OF THE LOCK AND DAM SYSTEM WHICH STRETCHES FROM MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA TO ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI.

THE WHISTLE BLOWER CONTENDS INFORMATION WAS CHANGED TO GIVE A GREEN LIGHT TO AN UNNECESSARY $50 MILLION DOLLAR STUDY THAT COULD LEAD TO EXPANSION THE 60 YEAR-OLD BARGE TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM. CORPS OFFICIALS SAY THEY WANT THE INVESTIGATION TO CONTINUE INSISTING THERE WAS NO INAPPROPRIATE ACTIVITY.

ON THE HEALTH FRONT, THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION ESTIMATE THAT AS MANY AS 80-MILLION PEOPLE ARE MADE ILL BY FOOD BORNE BACTERIA EVERY YEAR. ONE OF THE SOURCES MAY BE THE CATTLE FEEDLOT.

A STUDY RELEASED THIS WEEK REVEALED THAT, DURING THE SUMMER, 50% OF THE CATTLE HERD MAY BE CONTAMINATED WITH THE DEADLY E. COLI OH157:H7 BACTERIA.

MEAT CAN BE CONTAMINATED DURING SLAUGHTER WHEN FECAL MATTER COMES IN CONTACT WITH THE CARCASS. TO PREVENT THE TAINTED MEAT FROM REACHING CONSUMERS PACKERS USE STEAM VACUUMS, HOT WATER OR MILD ACID BATHS, STEAM PASTEURIZATION, AND RECENTLY, IRRADIATION. THESE ANTI-MICROBIAL WEAPONS ARE ALSO TEAMED UP WITH LABORATORY TESTING.

Tags: agriculture animals army diseases engineers food safety livestock news