July 16, 2018

Omnibus Funding Bill Bans Chinese Chicken from School Lunches

The DeLauro-Pingree Amendment in the Omnibus spending bill that was just passed by Congress bans purchase of chicken raised in the United States and processed in China for school lunches. The bill was passed by the House last Thursday and the Senate on Saturday.

School LunchroomRepresentative Rosa DeLauro said in a statement, “banning Chinese chicken from school meals is a common-sense step to protect our kids. China’s food safety record is atrocious, yet last year USDA deemed poultry processed in China to be as safe as poultry processed here. Children are among the most susceptible to foodborne illness. We cannot take unnecessary risks with our health.”

Representative Pingree said, “Chinese chicken does not belong in school lunches. China has such serious food safety problems that even Chinese consumers don’t feel safe eating some of the food that is processed there.”

The Safe Food Coalition sent a letter to Senators and Representatives last month, asking them to approve Section 742, that prohibits the USDA from using funds to purchase poultry from China to be served in national nutrition programs. Section 742 corrects a misstatement by FSIS in 2013 when it reaffirmed its decision to find the Chinese poultry processing system equivalent to the US system. The original press release said poultry products from China would not be used in USDA’s child nutrition programs, but that statement was not accurate. The┬áprovision ensures the original intent.

Four Chinese facilities are certified to export processed poultry products to the U.S., but there are not assurances that Chinese record keeping will be adequate. And while the poultry must come from slaughter facilities in the U.S., Canada, or Chile, there is no FSIS presence in China to verify that the rule is being followed.

Comments

  1. Paul Richter MD says:

    Great act. to protect the children!
    Now how about getting Del Monte, Costco and who knows which other companies, to stop selling Chinese origin fruit cups and maybe other items I have not yet discovered.
    Don’t these people ever learn? Chinese food killed many dogs last year-so are we next on the list?
    STOP the madness!
    Paul Richter

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