Over the last thirty years or so, fast foods have literally intruded and broke into every nook and corner of the American society. The fast food industry is an industry that evolved with just a few of modest eateries in the southern Californian region that served hot dogs and hamburgers, and the same has now infiltrated into every possible space of the American society, offering a wide variety of fast foods in all parts of the nation where customers are keen on spending money on fast foods.
Fast foods, which were initially served in specific eateries at the time of the evolution of the industry, today are being served even in restaurants, drive-through, airports, and even many schools as well. According to the statistics presented by Schlossar in his book ‘ Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal,’ in the year 1970, it was reported that the amount of money that Americans spent on fast food was approximately USD 6 billion; and the same was more than USD 110 billion in the year 2000. Schlosser is completely against this industry. He feels that the American fast food industry is a classic representation of fugitive private enterprise, worthless contemporary culture, and insensitive globalization. It is unscrupulous for the economy, harmful for the workers and consumers alike.
Schlosser feels that the American meatpacking industry is the most dangerous employments available in the society. He claims that the extent of safety and hygiene in this industry is extremely poor, especially the workers’ safety is a worrisome aspect. It has been quoted that millions of employees working in the meatpacking industry are prone to cripple injuries every year. It was reported by Schlosser in his book that, approximately one-quarter of the nation’s 150, 000 meatpacking staff suffered work related injuries, in the year 1999. This industry not just has the highest rate in terms of injury, but also largely the highest industry with serious ailments related to work. The American meatpacking industry has a well-documented account of disheartening and unfavourable reports about work related injuries, misrepresenting data about the same, along with placing injured employees back to work in the minimalist time possible in order to reduce the number of lost workdays in their official reports.
Every New Year tosses increased number of injured workers, laying increased pressure upon taxpayers to support and promote the poor safety records adhered by the meatpacking industry. There does not exist any kind of official figures or data using which one can measure the actual amount of agony and torment that workers in the meatpacking community’ experience today. A list of the numerous accident reports that were filed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) offers a sense of the hazards and vulnerabilities that workers confront on a daily basis in the numerous meatpacking companies of the nation. The most unsafe and treacherous such meatpacking plants are the units where livestock gets slaughtered. When compared to these, the slaughterhouses where poultry is slaughtered are relatively safer as they are extremely automated highly mechanized; and the poultry are bred in such a manner so that they transform into uniform size at the time of maturity. Schlosser strongly feels that there is an imminent need to put an end to this ruthless chain.
Schlosser, Eric. Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2012. Book.
—. “ The Chain Never Stops.” 2001. http://www. motherjones. com/politics/2001/07/dangerous-meatpacking-jobs-eric-schlosser. 10 December 2014.