October 25, 2021

Congress to USDA: No Chinese Chicken in School Lunches

Several members of Congress have sent a letter to ranking members of the Senator and House Committee on Appropriations and Agriculture, telling them that chicken processed in China and exported to the U.S. should not be served in school lunches. The letter was sent to Senators Mark Pryor (D-AR), Roy Blunt (R-MO), and Congressmen Robert Aderholt (R-AL) and Sam Farr (D-CA).

School LunchThose members of Congress are concerned about the problem with food safety in China. They also believe  FSIS will eventually let China export raw chicken to the U.S. They are asking that language in the Fiscal Year 2014 Agriculture Appropriations Bill should ensure that Chinese-processed chicken will not be included in the National School Lunch Program and other federal food programs, and that no funds should be used to implement a rule that would let poultry slaughtered in China to be exported to the U.S.

They stated that  they are concerned about China’s weak enforcement of food safety regulations that caused problems such as “more than 300,000 Chinese children fell seriously ill, with some dying, from melamine-tained milk powder; dangerously high levels of mercury found in Chinese baby formula; the sale of more than $1 million worth of rat and other small mammal meat passed off to consumers as lamb; and more than 16,000 diseased pig carcasses dumped in a river to rot.”

In addition, last year a Chinese poultry supplier provided Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants with chickens that were raised with large quantities of illegal drugs. The problem with pet food treats imported form China that has killed and sickened more than 4,000 pets in the U.S. was also raised.

Most of the food that is used in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP) comes from private vendors, not the USDA. Those vendors must use only 51% domestic ingredients, so foods such as chicken soup may contain Chinese-processed chicken at up to 49% of the finished product. The legislators think that allowing Chinese processed chicken into the school lunch program would be taking unnecessary risks, given that children are a vulnerable population with respect to food poisoning and chemical exposure.

Signers of the letter include Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Louise Slaughter (D-NY), Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH), Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL), Charles Rangel (D-NY), Mark Pocan (D-WI), Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), John Dingell (D-MI) Janice Schakowsky (D-IL), Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA),and Tony Cardenas (D-CA).


  1. pigbitin Mad says

    How ’bout lets not serve it anywhere. You know this is only about greedy corporations saving a few bucks and NOT passing the savings along to us.

    The food here is not much better I am sure. But I think regardless of the outcome, it would behoove people to stop buying their food from large conglomerates. Stop buying EVERYTHING from large companies. It’s hard to boycott 100%, but if you can do it 90%, why wouldn’t you.

    90% of all consumers cutting back 90% would really hurt. Most of the things consumed are not necessary and most people would be happier without a house full of crappy plastic toys and trinkets from China that break the moment you open the package….seriously the products ate that bad.

  2. Laurie Matson says

    Chicken processed in China is not to go to the School Lunch Program, yet it is safe for everyone else?? I don’t want my meat coming from China period!!! Nobody does except the ones standing to profit from it. It’s sick and twisted that the USDA wants to Import Chicken from China for Human Consumption!!! We and our Pets say NO to Chinese Chicken!!!

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