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Old 29th April 2020, 07:56 AM   #41
pgwenthold
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I don't understand the EO declaring meat packing plants to be "essential businesses." As far as I know, they are already classified as such. The reason they are shutting down is because workers are getting sick.

Is the idea really to tell workers they have to go anyway?

BTW, my wife is a veterinarian, and vets are considered essential businesses (and are busier than ever). But that doesn't mean they have to be open - many clinics have shut down because the staff is sick.
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Old 29th April 2020, 08:07 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by BobTheCoward View Post
Meat is a luxury from a resource perspective. A meat shortage is not synonymous with a food shortage. It could even increase the food supply.
Sure. But you might be eating corn or soy that's normally used for livestock feed. Infinitely better than starving, but probably not the best food, in terms of both tatste and nutrition. Also logistics of packaging/labeling for human consumption, unless you want to buy it in 50 lb. bags or whatever packaging is standard for livestock.
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Old 29th April 2020, 08:15 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by pgwenthold View Post
Is the idea really to tell workers they have to go anyway?
I think the government should contract out public relations associated with the push to keep meat-processing facilities open. Give the job to Arby's. After all, Arby's already has an ad campaign centered around the voice of Darth Vader saying "WE HAVE THE MEAT!" It seems appropriate now.
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Old 29th April 2020, 09:30 AM   #44
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Does anyone here know if it has been established that the meatpacking workers were infected at work as opposed to at home or the grocery store or wherever?
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Old 29th April 2020, 09:43 AM   #45
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Old 29th April 2020, 10:16 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by pgwenthold View Post
I don't understand the EO declaring meat packing plants to be "essential businesses." As far as I know, they are already classified as such. The reason they are shutting down is because workers are getting sick.

Is the idea really to tell workers they have to go anyway?
As best I can tell, not exactly, but you are in the ballpark.

From my reading, and in some cases reading between the lines, the reason the plants are shutting down is that some workers are getting sick. Among the remaining workers some (quite understandably) do not want to work. Others, depending on local rules, might be ordered to self isolate due to close contact with someone who tested positive. However, there are still enough workers to run the line, perhaps at reduced capacity.

Except...………..

Liability.

If the company knows that there have been positive tests, and they keep the line running anyway, they are just begging to be sued.

So, the executive order does not force any individual workers to show up to work. It does say that the plant has to be open, and it says that anyone who does show up to work cannot sue their employer if they get sick.

At least, that's what I got out of it yesterday, before the actual text of the order was published. I haven't read today's news.
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Old 29th April 2020, 10:20 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
Does anyone here know if it has been established that the meatpacking workers were infected at work as opposed to at home or the grocery store or wherever?
Impossible to say, and not all that important. The first one at any given plant obviously got it somewhere else. However, I have read that meat packing workers tend to have a much higher incidence than their surrounding communities, which suggest that they got infected at the plant in some fashion. For example, I read that some very high percentage, 25% sticks in my mind but don't quote me on that, of the cases in South Dakota were from the one Smithfield plant.
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Old 29th April 2020, 10:43 AM   #48
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I just read the actual executive order. Perhaps it needs a lawyer to understand it. To me, it looks like a nothingburger….which is an appropriate term under the circumstances. That might be what we're eating soon.

If there was something in there limiting liability, I didn't see it. I think that it was basically saying that some plants had closed even though the closures were not in line with guidance issued by CDC and other agencies. Maybe the implication is that as long as they are operating within those guidelines, they're off the hook for liability? I know that yesterday, when the order was just a rumor, people, including Chuck Schumer, were questioning whether the President has the power to let them off the hook for liability.

There was a section about the Defense Production Act, which was invoked, but I don't see how it applies. Once more, it's beyond my knowledge, but the executive order in question refers to the authority under that act to force companies to prioritize government contracts over other work. I don't see how that applies, but I'm sure guys who work at USDA, especially the lawyers there, would understand it.

It does authorize the Depatment of Agriculture to provide services and supplies to get the companies compliant with CDC guidance, but not specifics. The lack of specifics doesn't surprise me, but it still leaves a lot of questions about what it means. In practice, does it mean anything?

This is another Trumpian sort of response. "Look at me, I'm doing something!" If I were the President, at this afternoon's presser, I would be inviting the Secretary of Agriculture, or someone he delegates, to talk about the steps that are being taken to provide government assistance to protect workers at important facilities, and protect the supply of food. Since I'm not President, I suspect that what ill actually happen is that the real President will stand up and say, "Problem solved. It's a good thing I'm President."
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Old 29th April 2020, 10:58 AM   #49
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Nobody is doing more to protect the workers than I am.

What are you doing?

The best things.
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Old 29th April 2020, 11:52 AM   #50
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I just read that boneless chicken items were the first to be hit. With plants operating with reduced workers, some have decided to do away with the deboning processes in order to maintain throughput.

Makes sense to me.
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Old 29th April 2020, 12:01 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by alfaniner View Post
Not a problem, Americans don't like beet anyway. Or even beetroot. Well, normal Americans.

Heathens!

Beet tops (beet greens) sauteed in butter = nummies.

And use the beets to make big ol' pot of borscht... also = nummies.
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Old 29th April 2020, 12:07 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
I just read that boneless chicken items were the first to be hit. With plants operating with reduced workers, some have decided to do away with the deboning processes in order to maintain throughput.

Makes sense to me.


So you're saying we're boned?
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Old 29th April 2020, 12:08 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by AnonyMoose View Post
And use the beets to make big ol' pot of borscht... also = nummies.


Good news, everybody! We found the Russian Troll!
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Old 29th April 2020, 12:45 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by Horatius View Post
Good news, everybody! We found the Russian Troll!
I meant German borscht! I meant German borscht!
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Old 29th April 2020, 12:47 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
I just read that boneless chicken items were the first to be hit. With plants operating with reduced workers, some have decided to do away with the deboning processes in order to maintain throughput.

Makes sense to me.
So that means the restaurants are going to not have chicken tenders?
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Old 29th April 2020, 01:17 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by pgwenthold View Post
So that means the restaurants are going to not have chicken tenders?
No, they'll have Chicken Boners.
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Old 29th April 2020, 06:38 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
But why should’ve there be disruption? Social distancing can be used in factories and the like, in areas where it can’t be avoided employees can be provided with PPE.

Yes, they "can" be.

But they weren't. And the real question is,"Will they be?"
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Old 29th April 2020, 06:49 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
Originally Posted by BStrong View Post
The Trump administration is considering cutting the pay of guest visa farmworkers during the coronavirus pandemic

The government sets the pay? What's up with that?

See highlighted, above.

H-2A visaWP

Quote:
Or is that a minimum wage that is different than "regular" minimum wage?

Yes.

Adverse Effect Wage RateWP
Quote:
The Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR) is the minimum wage that the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has determined "must be offered and paid to U.S. and alien workers by agricultural employers of nonimmigrant H-2A visa agricultural workers" (Federal Register, February 10, 1999, p. 6690). Where agricultural employers offer employment to nonimmigrant foreign workers, payment of at least the AEWR is required. Published once a year, usually in early February, by DOL with the assistance of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the AEWR sets a separate minimum wage rate (i.e., a rate that will not adversely affect the employment opportunities of U.S. workers) for each state (see 20 CFR 655)
.

Quote:
Either way, count on Trump to figure that the best way to help with an industry that is suffering major illnesses is to cut workers' pay.

Not just Trump. It is the natural instinct of conservatives in general and Republicans in particular to insure that the burden of extraordinary cost saving measures be borne by those least able to afford it.

Wouldn't want the deserving rich to have to put off buying their third house in Aspen. Or ... gods forbid ... miss a payment on their yacht or personal jet.
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Old 29th April 2020, 06:54 PM   #59
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Here's an interesting piece from NPR today:

"In Nebraska on Tuesday, some of the 2,000 workers at a Smithfield Foods pork plant outside Lincoln briefly walked off the job to protest plans to keep open the facility, which has reported 48 COVID-19 cases."


That would be an infection rate of 2.5%, roughly 8 times the national average, and 15 times the average for the state of Nebraska. That would certainly suggest that the plant is a good place to catch Covid-19.

Of course, a lot of things can contribute to a high infection rate, not the least of which is greater amount of testing, but at first glance it would certainly seem that the workers have cause for concern about their safety.
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Old 29th April 2020, 07:04 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
Here's an interesting piece from NPR today:

"In Nebraska on Tuesday, some of the 2,000 workers at a Smithfield Foods pork plant outside Lincoln briefly walked off the job to protest plans to keep open the facility, which has reported 48 COVID-19 cases."


That would be an infection rate of 2.5%, roughly 8 times the national average, and 15 times the average for the state of Nebraska. That would certainly suggest that the plant is a good place to catch Covid-19.

Of course, a lot of things can contribute to a high infection rate, not the least of which is greater amount of testing, but at first glance it would certainly seem that the workers have cause for concern about their safety.

Trump's going to fix that for them.

He's going to give their employers immunity from lawful redress.

That ought to make them happier.
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Old 29th April 2020, 07:12 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by quadraginta View Post
Trump's going to fix that for them.

He's going to give their employers immunity from lawful redress.

That ought to make them happier.
And the employers will be extra careful about safety knowing they can't be sued.


In all seriousness, if I were President, I could see doing something somewhat like this, including the liability waiver. However, what it would look like is that I would call the head of the USDA and say, "I want the meat plants kept open. Figure out if there is anything the federal government can do to make them safer, and how much it will cost. I've got 500 million dollars available in funds that have already been appropriated. If that's not enough, I'll call Mitch and Nancy and make sure you get more. This is food we're talking about. If the richest country in the world can't put hamburger on the shelves, we don't deserve to get another four years. Make it happen, and if anything is in your way, call me ASAP."

I doubt that it happened that way.

Last edited by Meadmaker; 29th April 2020 at 07:14 PM.
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Old 29th April 2020, 07:42 PM   #62
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Well, he is taking credit for solving the problem. Let's see if it is actually solved.

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Trump Retweeted

North American Meat Institute
@MeatInstitute
"We are grateful to @realDonaldTrump for protecting our nation’s food supply," said @MeatInstitute Pres. & CEO Julie Anna Potts. "The safety of the heroic men & women working in the meat & poultry industry is the 1st priority. And as it is assured, facilities should re-open.

The White House
@WhiteHouse
Our nation has ample supply of food—and President @realDonaldTrump is clearing the bottleneck and ensuring that our farmers and ranchers can sell their products.
Hey, if I get hamburger next week, and we don't hear of tons of disease at the packing houses, I'll give credit where credit is due.

And if not, I'll give blame where blame is due.
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Old 30th April 2020, 05:21 AM   #63
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
Well, he is taking credit for solving the problem. Let's see if it is actually solved.



Hey, if I get hamburger next week, and we don't hear of tons of disease at the packing houses, I'll give credit where credit is due.

And if not, I'll give blame where blame is due.


Reading that tweet, it's actually an amazingly good example of how to write in the Trump Era. It should probably end up in a textbook at some point. It strikes a great balance of sounding like it means one thing, while it can also mean the exact opposite, all while maintaining a tone that won't trigger Trump's attack response, and covering their asses.
North American Meat Institute
@MeatInstitute
"We are grateful to @realDonaldTrump for protecting our nation’s food supply," said @MeatInstitute Pres. & CEO Julie Anna Potts. "The safety of the heroic men & women working in the meat & poultry industry is the 1st priority. And as it is assured, facilities should re-open.
They start strong right away: Fulsome Praise for Dear Leader. It's a near-certainty that Trump won't read any further than this, and absolutely certain he won't understand anything else, even if he does read it.
North American Meat Institute
@MeatInstitute
"We are grateful to @realDonaldTrump for protecting our nation’s food supply," said @MeatInstitute Pres. & CEO Julie Anna Potts. "The safety of the heroic men & women working in the meat & poultry industry is the 1st priority. And as it is assured, facilities should re-open.

Now we see them start to twist. Notice how they don't say whose "1st priority" this is, or even should be. Is it Trump's first priority? Maybe, that's certainly what Trump will think they're saying. Is it the industry's? The public's? Hey, who knows, could be anyone's!
North American Meat Institute
@MeatInstitute
"We are grateful to @realDonaldTrump for protecting our nation’s food supply," said @MeatInstitute Pres. & CEO Julie Anna Potts. "The safety of the heroic men & women working in the meat & poultry industry is the 1st priority. And as it is assured, facilities should re-open.

And then there's the "**** you" to Trump's order to re-open. "And as it is assured...." But of course, there's no plans for creating such assurances. No plans, no equipment, no leadership, nothing. So, yes, they "should re-open" (Of course we agree with Dear Leader! We "should" re-open!"), but when they don't actually re-open, they can blame it on the safety not being assured.

And since safety is everyone's priority, and no-one's, no one in particular can be blamed when they don't re-open.

But, if they do re-open, and something happens, as it almost certainly will, they can blame Trump, since they were ordered to re-open.

They've covered their ass for every possibility, while making Trump think they're wholly on his side.

Brilliant!
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Old 30th April 2020, 07:46 AM   #64
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Reason magazine has some analysis of the executive order today.

https://reason.com/2020/04/29/the-ex...-to-stay-open/


As I thought, it doesn't actually say what the media says it says. It doesn't say meat facilities have to stay open. It doesn't say that employees can't sue employers.

What it says, apparently if you read through the eyes of the lawyers, is that state and local authorities cannot force meat packing plants to close. As for lawsuits, apparently if an employer follows all the regulations, that is taken as evidence that suits alleging worker endangerment do not have merit. What this order says is that the CDC guidelines are the appropriate regulations related to Covid-19, so that if a worker (or next of kin) files suit in the future, the employer can say that they followed the guidelines, so they shouldn't be held liable.

And, one of the most significant of those guidelines is that workers who have come in close contact with someone who tested positive are not required to self quarantine. In other words, if they guy next to you on the line gets sick, you're still allowed to come to work.

So, it isn't a nothingburger, but it's not a Big Mac either. It's not nearly what it was portrayed as. Now, the big question is, will it work. Trump has already taken credit for saving the meat supply. Let's see what happens by next week.
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Old 30th April 2020, 08:12 AM   #65
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I did my twice-monthly shopping run yesterday, fully expecting to see a run on meats. To my surprise the one and only item I couldn't find were turkey sausages of the non-breakfast variety. Everything else, including pork in all its forms, was amply stocked. They even had ground turkey sausage in those 1-2lb bulk tubes, just not the 5-packs of sausages in casing.

Naturally that was the one meat item I actually needed/wanted so I had to make a substitution, but the panic buying I was expecting to see simply hadn't happened. Quite shocking, as my state did the whole 'empty the shelves of TP and hand sanitizer' back when we had a total of around 10 cases and no deaths, and were still a ways away from any mandated shutdowns or the like.

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Old 30th April 2020, 10:01 AM   #66
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
Reason magazine has some analysis of the executive order today.

https://reason.com/2020/04/29/the-ex...-to-stay-open/


As I thought, it doesn't actually say what the media says it says. It doesn't say meat facilities have to stay open. It doesn't say that employees can't sue employers.

What it says, apparently if you read through the eyes of the lawyers, is that state and local authorities cannot force meat packing plants to close. As for lawsuits, apparently if an employer follows all the regulations, that is taken as evidence that suits alleging worker endangerment do not have merit. What this order says is that the CDC guidelines are the appropriate regulations related to Covid-19, so that if a worker (or next of kin) files suit in the future, the employer can say that they followed the guidelines, so they shouldn't be held liable.

And, one of the most significant of those guidelines is that workers who have come in close contact with someone who tested positive are not required to self quarantine. In other words, if they guy next to you on the line gets sick, you're still allowed to come to work.

So, it isn't a nothingburger, but it's not a Big Mac either. It's not nearly what it was portrayed as. Now, the big question is, will it work. Trump has already taken credit for saving the meat supply. Let's see what happens by next week.
"Allowed" to come to work.
Meaning that if you do not because there is a demonstrable danger of becoming infected, you are a "voluntary quit"- and are not able to collect unemployment benefits.

So, yes, "allowed"- therefore if you do not you will receive no help- regardless of how many of your coworkers are becoming infected.

Then again, if you have been wanting your Mother-in-law to get out of that in-law suite......
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Old 30th April 2020, 10:08 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by pgwenthold View Post
So that means the restaurants are going to not have chicken tenders?
They have not been selling them at McDonald's where I live NY for probably a month. They do sell the Nuggets but as an old commercial used to say "parts is parts"
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Old 30th April 2020, 10:39 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
And the employers will be extra careful about safety knowing they can't be sued.


In all seriousness, if I were President, I could see doing something somewhat like this, including the liability waiver. However, what it would look like is that I would call the head of the USDA and say, "I want the meat plants kept open. Figure out if there is anything the federal government can do to make them safer, and how much it will cost. I've got 500 million dollars available in funds that have already been appropriated. If that's not enough, I'll call Mitch and Nancy and make sure you get more. This is food we're talking about. If the richest country in the world can't put hamburger on the shelves, we don't deserve to get another four years. Make it happen, and if anything is in your way, call me ASAP."

I doubt that it happened that way.
Mitch would demand we only supply frozen burgers with Jack Daniels or some similar flavor and Nancy would say close the plants and only provide plant based alternatives.

I am sure there are plans already waiting to continue the food supply (as there probably have been for years) but whether or not ground beef is available is probably not its main priority.

I was able to buy 2 1/2 pounds of skirt steak this morning for a BBQ. So the chain is not broken yet. Almost had to take out a mortgage on the house though.
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Old 30th April 2020, 01:15 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
And the employers will be extra careful about safety knowing they can't be sued.


In all seriousness, if I were President, I could see doing something somewhat like this, including the liability waiver. However, what it would look like is that I would call the head of the USDA and say, "I want the meat plants kept open. Figure out if there is anything the federal government can do to make them safer, and how much it will cost. I've got 500 million dollars available in funds that have already been appropriated. If that's not enough, I'll call Mitch and Nancy and make sure you get more. This is food we're talking about. If the richest country in the world can't put hamburger on the shelves, we don't deserve to get another four years. Make it happen, and if anything is in your way, call me ASAP."

I doubt that it happened that way.
I could see that - with some additions:
rationing - don't make it crazy hard, but limit per person-per visit to store purchase amounts. People could still work around that by making multiple purchases and by visiting stores, but it would be a pain and that might dissuade the worst of the idiots who want to buy the entire butcher's section of the store.

Allow a closure of a week or two to go along with implementing the safety measures. A week or two of running down supplies in frozen warehouses is not going to hurt anyone - but staying open and forcing employees to choose between unsafe work conditions or losing the job without unemployment benefits could hurt people.
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Old 30th April 2020, 01:27 PM   #70
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Originally Posted by crescent View Post
I could see that - with some additions:
rationing - don't make it crazy hard, but limit per person-per visit to store purchase amounts. People could still work around that by making multiple purchases and by visiting stores, but it would be a pain and that might dissuade the worst of the idiots who want to buy the entire butcher's section of the store.

Allow a closure of a week or two to go along with implementing the safety measures. A week or two of running down supplies in frozen warehouses is not going to hurt anyone - but staying open and forcing employees to choose between unsafe work conditions or losing the job without unemployment benefits could hurt people.
In NY they already ration what meat you can buy at the grocery store. 2 packages of each type. Don't think it is the law but all the grocery stores I go to have been doing it since March.

ETA: I searched google for NY rationing of meat and found this from the 1942 NY Times.
NO RUSH AT STORES TO BUY TINNED FOOD BEFORE RATIONING; Grocers Told by OPA Counsel They Are Not Required to Sell to Suspected Hoarders QUANTITIES ARE LIMITED First Point Values Will Hold Back Emergency Stocks -Upward Revision Planned NO RUSH AT STORES TO BUY TINNED FOOD

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Old 2nd May 2020, 09:10 AM   #71
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
Well, he is taking credit for solving the problem. Let's see if it is actually solved.



Hey, if I get hamburger next week, and we don't hear of tons of disease at the packing houses, I'll give credit where credit is due.

And if not, I'll give blame where blame is due.
Lot of stories in the news today about grocery stores limiting meat purchases.

Not looking good.

It doesn't seem that the highly touted executive order actually accomplished anything. Go figure. Still, a bit too early to say, but things aren't going in a positive direction.
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Old 2nd May 2020, 06:06 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
Lot of stories in the news today about grocery stores limiting meat purchases.

Not looking good.

It doesn't seem that the highly touted executive order actually accomplished anything. Go figure. Still, a bit too early to say, but things aren't going in a positive direction.

Grocery stores around here have been limiting purchases of meat for a while. Several weeks, probably.

They also have been limiting purchases of toilet paper, disinfectant products, and a number of other things.

I figured it was to avoid the sort of panic buying that created the Great Toilet Paper Wasteland of 2020. The supply end of our distribution just isn't designed to address that.

That doesn't mean that real shortages are not in a possible future, but taken by itself I don't think that limiting purchases is proof of any dire prospects. Not yet, anyhow.
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Old 2nd May 2020, 06:26 PM   #73
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We've been limited to 3 items of bread, 3 packs of tp, 3 containers of cleaning supplies or 3 packages of meat since the beginning. We were initially limited to 3 gals of milk but they lifted that (milk is constantly replenished and there is plenty).

We go through about 3 + gals of milk each week so need to shop.

The only thing that's been an issue for us is flour. We are still ok could use more before too long.
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Old 2nd May 2020, 07:17 PM   #74
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I did our grocery shopping yesterday. Plenty of meat of every kind. The only thing I haven't been able to find for weeks now is, believe it or not, Pasta Roni.
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Old 4th May 2020, 06:22 PM   #75
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Wendy's ran out of beef in some areas of the country.

I'm pretty sure that's not the result of panic buying.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/meat-...234925159.html
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Old 5th May 2020, 03:24 AM   #76
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
Does anyone here know if it has been established that the meatpacking workers were infected at work as opposed to at home or the grocery store or wherever?
I do not have an evidenced-based answer.

I suspect the high transmission rate was less a matter of workers standing too close together and more a matter of them being paid jack so that 5-7 of them crowd into a one-bedroom apartment
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Old 5th May 2020, 05:09 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by Ladewig View Post
I do not have an evidenced-based answer.

I suspect the high transmission rate was less a matter of workers standing too close together and more a matter of them being paid jack so that 5-7 of them crowd into a one-bedroom apartment
All 5-7 of them are wearing masks at home and sanitizing constantly? Or, are they instead "rolling the dice"?
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Old 5th May 2020, 05:17 AM   #78
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Originally Posted by Meadmaker View Post
Wendy's ran out of beef in some areas of the country.

I'm pretty sure that's not the result of panic buying.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/meat-...234925159.html

I agree.

But since it seems to be specific to Wendy's, and not even to all Wendy's, I suspect that, as the article suggested, it may well be a result of factors unique to the supply chain Wendy's has customized to support their 'Fresh, Never Frozen' marketing.

This may well be the first signs of scarcity in the hamburger distribution channels. Other signs seem to support that.

But it isn't exactly widespread ... yet.
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Old 5th May 2020, 05:47 AM   #79
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I've seen photos of the meat processing workers and they are wearing masks on the job. But I haven't seen photos of them at the grocery store or other places including situations at their homes and the homes of others. We don't know how all these thousands of workers behave when they aren't at work. Many or some of them might be "muh rights" kind of people and then simply not wear masks and/or do proper social distancing.
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Old 5th May 2020, 08:09 AM   #80
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
I've seen photos of the meat processing workers and they are wearing masks on the job. But I haven't seen photos of them at the grocery store or other places including situations at their homes and the homes of others. We don't know how all these thousands of workers behave when they aren't at work. Many or some of them might be "muh rights" kind of people and then simply not wear masks and/or do proper social distancing.
Around where I grew up there is a big "meat packing plant" with the associated feedlots and such (Once it was called Monfort, then ConAgra, now it is JBS or Swift). The employees tend to be the working poor, following immigration trajectories similar to what has happened in the past with other immigrant-dominated lines of work.

When my Dad was a young man, the industry was staffed with poorer white people. Then they moved up the ladder and in my childhood it was staffed with Mexican immigrants, later trending to immigrants from Central America (because the Mexican immigrants had moved up the ladder as they became more established). Now it is mostly immigrants from Somalia, but still with a lot of Central American immigrants mixed in.

They are the working poor. They mostly live in poor quality housing, with extended families living in houses that were meant to house single families - think of a three bedroom house with six adults and eight kids living in it.

They are not pseudo-patriotic rednecks. Just poor immigrants people scratching to get by.
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