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Meat Industry says California’s Ban on Sick Livestock Goes Too Far

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

 

The meat industry is challenging a new California law that bans the use of sick or disabled livestock in the food supply. In their lawsuit, The National Meat Association says the new rule illegally preempts federal statutes. KPBS Reporter Kenny Goldberg has more.

 

The new law took effect earlier this month. It passed last year after videotapes emerged showing workers at a Chino slaughterhouse abusing sick cows.

 

Federal law prevents the use of sick cattle in the food supply. The meat industry says California's rule that bans other sick livestock like hogs goes too far.

 

Gene Baur heads up the non-profit group Farm Sanctuary . He argues downed animals should never be used for food.

 

Gene Baur : It's unhealthy and it's also inhumane, because they're dragged onto trucks and taken to slaughterhouses, they're often pushed with forklifts. So it's a cruel system and it doesn't have to be this way.    

 

Baur says animals that are too sick to stand may be more likely to be infected with dangerous bacteria.

 

Kenny Goldberg, KPBS News.

 

 

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