"The House bill is a classic example of addressing only the symptoms of the problem rather than the problem itself," Thornsberry pointed out. "The problem is that the U.S. has lowered its import standards to facilitate higher-risk food imports; it has abrogated its duty to inspect and enforce food safety standards both here and abroad by allowing processing plants to regulate themselves under the failed HACCP system; and, it has embraced policies that have driven independent farmers and ranchers out of business by the hundreds of thousands, replacing them with corporate-owned, industrialized food production units that have a propensity to cut food safety corners to maximize corporate profits.
"We urge the Senate to recognize that independent U.S. farmers and ranchers deserve no less from Congress than to be presumed careful, conscientious, and law abiding food producers -- a reputation earned by them while feeding this great nation during the past two centuries," he emphasized. "R-CALF looks forward to working with Congress to make improvements to food safety in the U.S. that will not penalize independent producers, but instead will correct our food safety problems at their primary source -- in under-inspected food packing and food processing facilities located in foreign countries and in the United States."
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R-CALF USA (Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund, United Stockgrowers of America) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring the continued profitability and viability of the U.S. cattle industry. R-CALFUSA represents thousands of U.S. cattle producers on trade and marketing issues. Members are located across 47 states and are primarily cow/calf operators, cattle backgrounders, and/or feedlot owners. R-CALFUSA directors and committee chairs are extremely active unpaid volunteers. R-CALFUSA has dozens of affiliate organizations and various main-street businesses are associate members. For more information, visit www.r-calfusa.com or, call 406-252-2516.
 HACCP is the acronym for Hazard and Analysis Critical Control Points, which replaced direct government inspection with, essentially, an honor system that relies on food processing facilities to police themselves.
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