Wretched egg farm con­di­tions

The Kansas City Star (Sunday) - - NATION WATCH -

Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion in­ves­ti­ga­tors found ro­dents, seep­ing ma­nure and mag­gots at the Iowa egg farms thought to be re­spon­si­ble for as many as 1,500 cases of sal­monella poi­son­ing.

FDA of­fi­cials re­leased their ini­tial ob­ser­va­tions of the in­ves­ti­ga­tions at Wright County Egg and Hil­lan­dale Farms on Mon­day. The two farms re­called more than 500 mil­lion eggs this month.

The re­ports re­leased by the FDA show many pos­si­ble sources of con­tam­i­na­tion at both farms — in­clud­ing ro­dent, bug and wild bird in­fes­ta­tion; un­con­tained ma­nure; and holes in walls — that could have caused the out­break.

In a state­ment, Wright County Egg said that it was work­ing “around the clock” to ad­dress FDA’s con­cerns and that some had al­ready been fixed. Hil­lan­dale re­leased a sim­i­lar state­ment.

The FDA has not tra­di­tion­ally in­spected egg farms un­til there has been a prob­lem. The agency will now in­spect all of the nation’s largest farms by the end of next year, the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion an­nounced last week.

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