Research

Fraud in Food Package Labeling

 

            Consider what you consume in your daily life. Consider what you feed your children. If you buy your child Tyson chicken nuggets because it’s their “favorite”, how do you know if you’d be buying your child the best chicken? Remember the Tyson scandal in the late 2000’s? According to the article Tyson Workers Torturing Birds, Urinating on Slaughter Line provided by peta.org, “On nine separate days, PETA's investigator saw workers urinating in the live-hang area, including on the conveyor belt that moves birds to slaughter.” Reconsidering those chicken nuggets? To think, this occurred after most food safety acts and laws were set into place; shouldn’t have these problems been eradicated?

"Unfortunately, controlling the amount of fraud that occurs daily in the food industry is next to impossible," said Michael Roberts, a professor of Food Law and Policy at UCLA and director of the Center for Food Law and Policy during an interview for an article provided by National Geographic titled; Food Fraud: Labels on What We Eat Often Mislead. This issue of fraud in food labeling occurs around the globe and in much worse happenings than in the United States.

            The populous is realizing that the concept of farm-to-table eating is by far the healthiest alternative in the world. More and more people are attempting to be more locavore when it comes to their eating habits. It seems the world is finally turning around and putting an end to mass produced, genetically altered matter that is considered food by large corporations. This is not the case. Big business has their hands in cheap food production more than ever. A recent study in South Africa has shown that nearly 80 percent of food labeled “game”, being legally hunted and slaughtered animals, included various not-game animals as fillers. Meat fraud isn’t as prevalent in the United States because of much tighter regulation by the U.S. government, but in Europe and multitudes of other regions, it is a considerable issue. Seafood made headlines in early 2013 after Oceana, an international non-profit organization, “issued a report announcing that one-third of the fish sampled during a nationwide survey was incorrectly labeled.”

            Efforts such as the Food Safety Modernization Act imposed in 2011 and the proposed Safety and Fraud Enforcement for Seafood Act help draw attention to these prevalent issues by the masses affected by these injustices. Worldwide control of large corporations pumping out modified food products is, unfortunately, theoretically impossible. Fortunately, increasing public knowledge of such fraudulent measures can help eradicate the illegal labeling on food products sold across the globe. With all of the exposure of large corporations, we will soon start a food revolution, and be able to provide ourselves and our families with the nutrition we deserve.

 

Bibliography

PETA, Tyson Workers Torturing Birds, Urinating on Slaughter Line

https://secure.peta.org/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=1121

National Geographic, Food Fraud: Labels on What we Eat Often Mislead

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/07/130712-food-fraud-science-economic-adulteration-seafood-honey-juice/