Pork producers welcome USDA line speed trial


Pork producers welcome USDA line speed trial

The USDA is inviting nine pork processing plants to participate in a trial that allows faster line speeds.

The move comes eight months after a U.S. District Court in Minnesota shot down a 20-year pilot program that Iowa Pork Producers Association CEO Pat McGonegle tells Brownfield reduced processing capacity 2 to 3 percent.

“Which thus had a negative impact on pork producers. So I think we’re looking at this as a positive step forward for those trials to begin in those plants. I don’t know what the exact timeline is for it.”

National Pork Producers Council president Jen Sorenson says the proposal will allow more hogs to be harvested and more pork to get to consumers.

The nine plants chosen for the trial have adopted USDA’s 2019 New Swine Inspection System.  Sorenson says the plants will collect data on the effects of line speeds on workers and share it with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).