Meat packing industry and The

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In our American history we have come across many debating issues. Many issues have been dealt with on small scales but other issues have become very serious. A lot of serious issues were dealt with during the time period of industrialization. With many debates such as monopolies and trustbusters of big corporations, working conditions and techniques often became unrecognized in the politically debating time period.

Upton Beall Sinclair (1878-1968), was an American writer and social and economic reformer, born in Baltimore, Maryland, and educated at the college of the city of New York and Colombia University (Upton). The author of 90 books, Sinclair became well known after the publication of his novel The Jungle (1906), which exposed the unsanitary and miserable working conditions in the stock yards of Chicago, Illinois (Upton). The novel also included gruesome descriptions of food production: Tuburculer beef, the grinding up of poisoned rats, and even workers falling into vats and emerging as Durham's pure leaf lard (Upton).

Upton's book is based on true events of a family that moves to America in search of a better life. While they are there they looked for work in Chicago and came across meatpacking. Unsanitary techniques that were put into the massive machines were literally disgusting. As before poisoned rats and workers turning into lard was an everyday thing that the workplace encountered. More disgusting things like using whole cows as ground beef or whole pigs grinned into sausage. Not one scrap of meat went to waist when the workers put animals in the grinders. Pools of blood and bathrooms like sewers are the last type of job environment I wouldn't want to be in.

A particular part I read of The Jungle describe in a more detailed fashion of the work place: "All day the blazing mid summer sun beat down upon that square mile of abominations: upon tens of thousands of cattle crowded into pens whose wooden floors stank and steamed catagian; upon bare blistering, cinder-strewn railroad tracks, and huge blocks of dingy meat factories, whose labyrinthine passages defied a breath of fresh air to penetrate them; and there were not merely rivers of hot blood and carloads of moist flesh, and rendering vats and soap caldrons, glue factories and fertilizer tanks, that smelt like the craters of hell-…"(Sinclair 295) This whole section threw me off guard to realize how much it really sort of speak sucked to work in that kind of setting.

By the 1900's most states had enacted food laws, but they were poorly enforced. An effort to enact a federal law was led by Dr. Harley W. Wiley, head of the bureau of chemistry in the department of agriculture. Amid a storm of public indignation, a pure food and Drug act was passed on June 30, 1906. The act forbade foreign and interstate commerce in adulterated or fraudulently labeled food and drugs. (Pure Food) After all this dilemma and conflict, we all basically feel better because now we have a hint on what meat packing companies used to put into there products and that we know they don't do those acts anymore we the consumer thank the pure food and drug act for its sanitation laws toward these meat packing fools.