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LINK The science is clear: dirty farm water is making us sick

"The culprit turned out to be E. coli, a powerful pathogen that had contaminated romaine lettuce grown in Yuma, Arizona, and distributed nationwide. At least 210 people in 36 states were sickened. Five died and 27 suffered kidney failure. The same strain of E. coli that sickened them was detected in a Yuma canal used to irrigate some crops.

For more than a decade, it’s been clear that there’s a gaping hole in American food safety: Growers aren’t required to test their irrigation water for pathogens such as E. coli. As a result, contaminated water can end up on fruits and vegetables.

After several high-profile disease outbreaks linked to food, Congress in 2011 ordered a fix, and produce growers this year would have begun testing their water under rules crafted by the Obama administration’s Food and Drug Administration.

But six months before people were sickened by the contaminated romaine, President Donald Trump’s FDA – responding to pressure from the farm industry and Trump’s order to eliminate regulations – shelved the water-testing rules for at least four years...

While postponing the water-testing rules would save growers $12 million per year, it also would cost consumers $108 million per year in medical expenses, according to an FDA analysis."

By HippieChick58
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9 comments

1

Resistant bacteria is now upon us. Follow the water shed near hog farms in Iowa & the antibiotic residue & the resistant bacteria mirror the route. A complex issue.

Countrywoman Level 8 Dec 23, 2018
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1

Another chapter of pure and tested BS....if this were true then pretty much ALL third world countries would've been wiped out the face of the Earth by now. Or, is anyone going to make the case that those countries have such testing systems in place? They all do agriculture, don't they?

IamNobody Level 8 Dec 3, 2018
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Actually, people in 3rd world countries do have very high rates of diseases spread by dirty water. Young children & infants are especially prone to dying of diarrheal diseases. I imagine the ones that survive to adulthood would have better resistance than people like us who were raised with cleaner water & food, but they still get serious diseases. Their extremely high birth rates may make it seem otherwise, but people there are not enjoying good health, & they have shorter lives.

Edited

@Carin I hear you however the purpose of the link in this post is to undermine something very specific. The third world country reference in my comment is in regard to the political rhetoric embedded in the original post, not an attempt to debate third world country issues.

4

Cattle feed lots and factory pig and chicken farms are simply environmental disasters which should be illegal.

wordywalt Level 8 Dec 3, 2018
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6

But that genius Ayn Rand said we need to let corporations do their thing and everyone will be happy! E Coli is for loserz. Thank you Archer Daniels Midland, Cargill, Monsanto and Tysons Foods, for giving us the food we deserve. smile001.gif

PalacinkyPDX Level 8 Dec 3, 2018
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5

Seems every time it rains to excess in the areas of the hog farms,the holding tanks overflow,letting all the "Effluent" get into the ground water,contaminating it for quite a while,nearby streams and rivers become conduits for the overflow to travel. I'd imagine all livestock production areas have the same problems....

Mike1947 Level 7 Dec 3, 2018
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2

We seldom, if ever, go out to eat. Our choice for reasons other than this. But it does make me wonder about the safety of restaurants and their food prep.

bigpawbullets Level 8 Dec 3, 2018
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Well I've worked in several kitchens and if you do go out, please never tell them you want a lemon slice in anything. I've never seen one washed before slicing. And many times no gloves are used. Beware.

They are filthy & their underpaid employees are more concerned with working as fast as they can so they don't get fired from their miserable jobs, than they are about your health. The places I worked in didn't wash most things except salad, spinach & leeks. We were expressly forbidden to wash other things. & if the meat fell on the floor it was too expensive to throw out. If the customer was lucky it was rinsed off. Fancy places were the worst about that as the meat was pricier. A dropped fast food burger might be tossed (depending on the manager on duty) but the fancy chefs were also in charge of purchasing & expected to keep costs down, so prime rib or lobster would never be wasted. Our immune systems are truly amazing.

And some would propose reducing regulations that have been relatively successful in eliminating typhoid & other transmittable plagues. Not that some still do not wash their hands.

@Countrywoman
With you on this one CW. As our population grows, international travel & migration continue to expand.... we're just asking for it by not taking care of our food and water sources.

5

Thank Trump for ruining the EPA...

slydr68 Level 7 Dec 2, 2018
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You mean the AgriBusiness Protection Agency?

@PalacinkyPDX They weren't that during the 12 years I worked with them...but I worked with the scientists, not the policy guys...

@slydr68 The EPA was created with the very best of intentions (by Nixon, of all people). It's been repeatedly attacked by the Republican Party since then, no more so than now. Yes, I feel bad for the employees of the EPA and even worse for the rest of us. That something like protecting the environment has become considered doctrinaire is a horrific sign of just how ultra right wing the Republican Party has become.

@PalacinkyPDX Exactly! they underfund the programs and agencies they don't like so they can say they are ineffective. That's their whole MO, so they can keep giving away everything to the top1%.

4

One of the costs of our heavy meat consumption lifestyle. Meat should be a luxury and only grass fed beef be allowed.

JackPedigo Level 8 Dec 2, 2018
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Not to mention the meat and poultry industry CEOs are overwhelmingly big Trump supporters. In other words, the largest polluters support Trump because they know they'll get a free ticket to poison the earth from him (not to mention continue the gravy train of virtually free massive land grants they get for cattle grazing and chicken industrial farming).

@PalacinkyPDX I agree but I also realize this industry has been around a long time under all kinds of legislatures. Going after these industries would be very difficult considering the increasing meat consumption of the world.

@JackPedigo It's only difficult because of the buying of our politicians. There is no problem we can't effectively deal with, the problem is political will. We need to vote for real issues, like food safety, the environment, and sustainability.

@Ktcyan Who is WE? You and I agree on the importance of this issue but there are lots of people who see this as just another "liberal" agenda. There are lots of people who are able to be brainwashed by the industry and also vote what they think are their interests. I see most of the posts/comments here are much more complicated than we would like to think.

@JackPedigo Yes true many people will never admit they are voting against themselves.

@Ktcyan Again and again another complicated issue. There are so many externalities (unintended consequences) that no can be certain their vote really makes things better.

2

Regulations and rules can be necessary and helpful especially when the quest for profits becomes overpowering.

kmdskit3 Level 8 Dec 2, 2018
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