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Poultry Industry Continues to Improve Worker Safety Record

15 November 2012

US - The incidence of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses in the poultry sector, which includes slaughter and processing, continues to decline, according to the 2011 Injury and Illness Report recently released by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The total recordable poultry processing illness and injury rate for 2011 was 5.8 cases per 100 full-time workers (per year), down from 5.9 in 2011. In terms of injuries per 100 full time workers, the poultry industry’s rate of 5.8 was below the rate of 6.4 for all animal slaughter and processing and only slightly above the rate of 5.6 for the entire food manufacturing sector.

Poultry processing’s 2011 rate of 5.8 represents a 74 per cent decrease from 1994 (the oldest data available on the BLS website), when the recorded rate was 22.7, demonstrating the enormous progress the industry has made in improving safety for its workforce.

“The significant and consistent decline in illness and injury rates among our workforce over the past two decades is a direct result of the poultry industry’s strong commitment to worker safety,” said National Chicken Council President Mike Brown. “Our employees are our most important asset. I commend poultry companies and their management teams for their tremendous efforts to protect them and for their ongoing dedication to further progress.”

John Starkey, president of US Poultry & Egg Association, commented: “The industry recognizes that our people are our most valuable asset, and worker safety efforts have never been stronger. Poultry companies continue to devote people, time and other resources to actively identify and correct workplace hazards.”

“The poultry industry has been diligent in reducing recordable injuries and illnesses for decades,” said National Turkey Federation President Joel Brandenberger. “This most recent data acknowledges the excellent safety performance achievements the poultry industry has accomplished. We all continue to learn additional practices and tools to further protect the people that work hard every day in our plants to provide high-quality, safe and nutritious protein for consumers.”

A recent economic impact study found that poultry production and processing is directly responsible for 327,400 jobs in the United States.

Further Reading

You can view the full report by clicking here.

ThePoultrySite News Desk

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