I Guess There’s a Reason They Call It SPAM

Posted: June 28, 2011 in Current Events

Here is a quote from an article about the abuse of employees by the company that produces Spam.  No, not the Internet variety, but rather the Monty Python Variety.

Every hour, more than 1,300 severed pork heads go sliding along the belt. Workers slice off the ears, clip the snouts, chisel the cheek meat.  Matthew GarciaThey scoop out the eyes, carve out the tongue, and scrape the palate meat from the roofs of mouths. Because, famously, all parts of a pig are edible (“everything but the squeal,” wisdom goes), nothing is wasted. A woman next to Garcia would carve meat off the back of each head before letting the denuded skull slide down the conveyor and through an opening in a plexiglass shield.

On the other side, Garcia inserted the metal nozzle of a 90-pounds-per-square-inch compressed-air hose and blasted the pigs’ brains into a pink slurry. One head every three seconds. A high-pressure burst, a fine rosy mist, and the slosh of brains slipping through a drain hole into a catch bucket. (Some workers say the goo looked like Pepto-Bismol; others describe it as more like a lumpy strawberry milkshake.) When the 10-pound barrel was filled, another worker would come to take the brains for shipping to Asia, where they are used as a thickener in stir-fry. Most days that fall, production was so fast that the air never cleared between blasts, and the mist would slick workers at the head table in a grisly mix of brains and blood and grease.

Lovely.  I don’t think I’ll ever be able to look at a Spam can the same way again, not to mention Chinese stir fry.

If you want a sterling example of American corporate greed at its best, and an argument in favour of government legislation and regulation of working conditions, read this six part article.  Just when you think that you’re tiring of the article, it throws in another incredible fact.

And now for something completely different:

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