USDA intends ending a ban of the importation of chicken nuggets from China. It’s surprising that this is happening amidst the wide spread “fake meat” from China scandal.
The reasons behind the lifting of the ban of processed chicken according to USDA is that there is now a legislation allowing chicken products to be sold in the United States without a country-of-origin label included in order to enhance fair play in the market and allow consumers decide on which products they want by virtue of the satisfaction they derive from the products and not to make their decision based solely on propaganda speculation.
While this legislation is laudable, it must be mentioned that this year alone in China there has been cases where rat meat had been used in place of mutton to deceive consumers.
What is even more worrisome is the incessant bird flu outbreaks and the seemingly unrepentant disregard for both animal and human life by the Chinese traders.
In its defence the USDA suggest that the chicken will be slaughtered in the U.S or in other countries and then the slaughtered meat is taken to China for processing and packaging for export. This is believed to be a cost effective way of meeting the increasing demand for chicken meat, however there will be no USDA representative in China to monitor the processing and packaging procedures to ensure that they adhere strictly to USDA standards.
This is where there is growing concerns and legitimately too, as China based traders are notorious for cutting corners and the fear is even though the chicken is slaughtered under strict hygienic conditions the processing and packaging made compromise the meat.
This system is not uncommon as it is already being used for U.S seafood as domestically caught Dungeness crab and Pacific salmon are already being processed in China and then shipped back to the U.S where there is increasing demand for these seafood and thereby saving large amounts of money in the process as it is a known fact that there are about 36 pin bones in salmon fish and getting rid of all these bones can only be effected by hand, China has the manpower at a low cost and so it makes economic sense to have these fish processed there as it would cost $1 per fish to have the bones removed in the U.S, but just 20 cents per fish in China.
The general consensus is that while we would save loads of money having these chicken nuggets processed in China and then re-exported there should be strict regulations to protect the final consumers from possible health complications arising from contaminated chicken products.