CDC report reveals thousands of previously undisclosed Covid-19 cases in food workplaces

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released an updated report on the spread of Covid-19 among food manufacturing and agricultural workers on Monday, revealing thousands of previously unreported cases and reiterating the disproportionate impact that the virus has had on workers of …

CDC updates Covid-19 numbers at meat plants but uses weeks-old data

As of May 31, more than 16,000 meat and poultry processing workers in 23 states had contracted Covid-19, and 86 had died of the disease, said a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released Tuesday. Nearly 90 percent of the affected workers were identified as Hispanic, Black, or Asian. According to more up-to-date data, however, the numbers for infected and deceased workers are actually much higher. (No paywall)

Biden calls meatpacking plant conditions ‘inhumane and downright immoral’ 

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden joined a chorus of voices demanding stronger workplace protections for meatpacking workers at a virtual town hall on Monday. Workers – falling ill from covid-19 – deserve a safer workplace, higher pay, and immigration protections, lawmakers …

In CDC report on ‘fast food,’ Sweetgreen and McDonald’s are treated as equals

A much-publicized report from the Centers for Disease Control released earlier this month found that more than a third of Americans eat fast food daily. But what wasn't included in the media coverage was that the study’s definition of "fast food" includes fast-casual restaurants, such as the custom-salad chain Sweetgreen, as well as coffee, bagel, and even ice cream shops. Such a broad definition, well beyond the burger-centric drive-through that the term "fast food" calls to mind, raises questions about how much the CDC data actually reveal about American eating habits.

Chicken is top among food categories in CDC analysis of food-borne illnesses

Chicken is America'a favorite meat, with per capita consumption approaching 110 pounds per person this year, roughly twice as much as beef. Five CDC scientists who analyzed U.S. outbreaks of food-borne illness in recent years say chicken caused the largest number of illnesses when outbreaks were ranked by food category.

CDC chief, entangled in ‘complex financial interests,’ resigns

Two days after he was sworn into office, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar accepted the resignation of CDC director Brenda Fitzgerald, whose six-month tenure at the agency ended in a warren of “complex financial interests” that prevented her from doing her job, said the HHS.

CDC director bought tobacco shares after taking office

Brenda Fitzgerald, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “bought shares in a tobacco company one month into her leadership of the agency charged with reducing tobacco use,” reported Politico.

U.S. gives short shrift to agro-defense and the risk of zoonotic diseases

The average American consumes more than a half-pound of meat each day, yet the country devotes limited thought or funding to protecting its livestock from diseases that could disrupt production or infect humans, said former Sen. Joe Lieberman during a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing.

Rural Americans use seat belts less, have higher death rate

The traffic death rate on rural roads is 2.6 time higher than the urban rate; 1.8 vs 0.7 per 100 million miles, say CDC researchers in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Seat belt usage is 14 percentage points lower among rural motorists than city residents, said the scientists, noting, …