NPPC Comments on Swine Inspection Program Federal Ruling

The National Pork Producers Council late last week welcomed a federal ruling upholding the Department of Agriculture’s New Swine Inspection System. A federal judge in California upheld the program, which NPPC says incentivizes investment in new technologies while ensuring a safe supply of wholesome American pork. In a statement, the organization says, “Pork producers use science-based approaches to continuously improve and modernize their practices to ensure product quality and consistency and their workforce’s health and safety.” However, opponents who filed the lawsuit argue the rule greatly undermines the ability of federal inspectors to protect consumers from foodborne illnesses by fully inspecting hog carcasses, and instead allows plant employees with little training to take over several steps. The lawsuit was filed by Food & Water Watch, Center for Food Safety and the Humane Farming Association. Center for Food Safety senior attorney Amy van Saun says, “we can only hope we don’t see more foodborne illness” because of the ruling.