Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Salmonella & E-Coli In Your Neighborhood

A grocery store named Rancho Liborio has come to Commerce City, Colorado, a Denver Suburb. The store is part of the chain - Liborio Markets, based in California. Television station KUSA, Channel 9 News in Denver has described the store as a “Latino-based” store. Of course, in Colorado, “Latino-based” means Mexican.

Commerce City has a high Mexican population so the store should do pretty well. Three additional stores are scheduled to open later this year in Aurora, Colorado Springs, and Greeley. Next year the owner plans to open four more in Westminster, Thornton, and two in Denver.

They’re just bringing in a little bit of Mexico to an area near you.

Apparently, one of the specialty food items will be live chickens that will be slaughtered in-house, on the premises, in the back. Store owner, Anthony Trujillo, is quoted as saying; "It's just live poultry that's processed in the back that has no access to the store."

Trujillo went on to describe the process saying that about 150 chickens a day will be trucked in to the store in climate-controlled trucks, then unloaded into a climate-controlled room in the back.

Every morning, the chickens will be given a fatal electric shock, de-feathered, cleaned, cut, and put on the shelves. Trujillo says no live chickens will remain in the back for more than five hours.

Trujillo must be very thoughtful, as he wants to make sure that the chickens enjoy a climate controlled environment just before they get the crap shocked out of them.

Neighbors are not happy. Some neighborhood residents have started a petition drive to stop the store from slaughtering in-house.

The new store has caused a stir in the neighborhood in which it will reside. One resident said;

"We're just appalled, if they want to do this in the privacy of their home, I don’t care. But we’re just opening up a keg of worms if this happens. If they make an exception for them, they're going to have to make an exception for everyone."

Apparently city law dictates that no slaughtering of livestock is allowed where such zoning has not been approved.

I asked a few co-workers of mine if they had heard about this new store. I kept the question neutral as I just wanted to hear what their thoughts were without making them defend their answer.

Not one of my colleagues saw a problem with the store. Their answers were similar. They all mentioned the fact that if you buy chicken in one of the supermarkets, someone still has to kill the chicken. They just kill it somewhere else. The only difference is one of geography, i.e. where the chicken meets its demise.

But where the chicken dies is not really the problem.

Anywhere you have live poultry, you have poultry droppings. Anywhere you have feces you have the potential for disease. And there ain’t too much nastier than a bunch of chickens. Ever hear of Salmonella, E-Coli, Avian Flu?

And where does it end? Hogs slaughtered to order on the premises? Will customers be given the choice of which live steer they want their steak from?

It all comes down to cultural diversity doesn’t it? I’m sure proponents of cultural diversity will think it’s cool to have an authentic Mexican grocery store in town. And since many illegals are sneaking across the border and coming to Colorado, they need a store where they pick up the fixin’s for a good home cooked meal.

Live animals and ready-to-buy food don’t mix. In-house slaughter isn’t an American custom. It’s simply not part of our culture. It is however, a third world kind of thing to do.

Let’s leave it in the third world where it belongs.


Blogger MonicaR said...

Not only that but those chickens scream at the top of their lungs on their way to the zapper. It's the death scream. It's weird.

I don't like the idea of it myself. However down on the Italian Market in S. Philly there is a store that has live chickens and they slaughter them right then and there and you take that fresh chicken meat home with you. It stinks to high heaven in that store, too. I went to get some one time and couldn't handle all of those dying chickens screaming!

10:11 PM  
Blogger Rocky said...

Truly amazing. I'm not normally a squeamish person, but I agree it would be weird. I'm glad you mentioned the smell associated with live poultry, I hadn't considered it. I don't have anything against Mexicans, either nationals or Mexican Americans, the thing that I do not like is the imposition and encroachment of foreign cultural activities upon Americans who chose not to participate. In this case, if the in-house slaughter is allowed by the city, then the neighbors will not have a choice.
Thanks for stopping by.

7:36 AM  

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