Help Keep Our Jobs & Food Safe


The National Chicken Council (NCC) is on the verge of convincing the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Congress to eliminate line speed limits in poultry plants.

Not only are some Local 342 Members working in the poultry industry right now, there are more than 70,000 poultry workers in our larger UFCW family.


Jobs inside poultry plants are some of the most dangerous and difficult in America, and the risk to food workers and to our food supply will increase if line speeds increase.

As line speeds increase, so do injuries — including serious and bloody cuts. Unbelievably, major poultry industry groups are ignoring these risks. They want to force poultry workers and federal meat inspectors to work significantly faster — increasing the odds they will be injured and make chicken less safe for every consumer to eat.


  • Poultry workers are at twice the risk of being injured on the job compared to other American workers, according to a 2016 report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO). These injuries are directly related to the fast and forceful nature of their work.
  • If current line speeds are increased, federal inspectors who are tasked with spotting contaminated birds may be forced to examine more than two per second for abscesses, tumors, or other diseases.
  • Countries which allow faster line speeds have more issues with food safety. Germany allows line speeds up to 200 BPM and their poultry meat is found to have higher levels of Salmonella and Campylobacter contamination.
  • At current line speeds, poultry workers at nonunion plants were regularly denied bathroom breaks and forced to wear diapers, according to a 2016 Oxfam report.

Please take a moment to tell the USDA what you think. Click here to leave a comment on the petition telling the USDA to reject the petition to eliminate line speed limits at poultry plants.

Feel free to use any of the following sample language in your comment:

  • Please keep consumers and poultry workers safe and reject this petition to eliminate line speeds. We depend upon America’s poultry workers for safe food.

  • Poultry jobs are already difficult and dangerous for workers. Injuries are high at current line speeds and may only increase at faster speeds.

  • Eliminating line speed limits makes it harder for federal meat inspectors and quality control workers in plants to do their jobs. That means it will be less safe for all of us to eat chicken.

  • We deserve safe food, and America’s poultry workers deserve safe workplaces. Reject this petition and keep safe line speed limits in poultry plants.

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