business news in context, analysis with attitude

The New York Times reports that a group of parents with children who have been made ill by exposure to E. coli bacteria, probably from tainted meat, have come to Washington this week to lobby for tougher regulations and more stringent enforcement by the government.

Ironically, this is the same week that Pilgrim’s Pride is going through the largest meat recall in history, bringing back more than 27 million pounds of meat because of concerns about listeria.

The group, Safe Tables Our Priority (STOP), is “asking for new rules for meat and poultry producers. They would include tough civil penalties for violations and authorizing the Agriculture Department to recall contaminated food,” the NYT writes.

The group supports a bill called Kevin's Law, named after a two-year-old who died because of E. coli exposure. This law would authorize the department to “close meat-processing plants that regularly fail to meet government food-safety standards.”
KC's View:
We wrote earlier this week that activists wanting tougher enforcement, but this NYT piece put a face on it – faces, in fact, of small children made extremely ill because of food safety problems.

It is a face that few legislators will be able to resist, nor do we think they should. When it comes to these kinds of issues, the most stringent, unforgiving enforcement probably should be the rule. We cannot imagine the pain these parents have endured.

And maybe that’s what the industry has to do. Not think like business. But think, and feel, and act like parents.