Food safety bill: big vs. small business

by Walter Olson on May 13, 2010

From the WSJ last month (Division of Labour) on the big federal food-safety bill sailing through Congress:

:…small farmers worry the measure’s fees and inspection requirements would be ruinously expensive and are pushing for exemptions.

“I know people who have been small farmers for 25 to 30 years who are looking to get out of the business because food safety is becoming so alarmist,” said Mary Alionis, whose eight-acre Whistling Duck Farm in Grants Pass, Ore., sells produce to farmers markets and restaurants.

Big food companies generally support the bill, judging the added expenses it would bring to be small compared with the potential financial damage of a vast product recall.

It’s a pattern we’ve seen before.

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Goodbye to Locally Processed Meats? | Austrian Economics Blog
05.28.10 at 12:02 am

{ 2 comments }

1 Rick H. 05.14.10 at 8:15 am

You mean the largest and most politically connected food producers would happily pay to eradicate their competition? What an amazing and unforeseen development!

2 GregS 05.14.10 at 10:09 am

All the reasons you’re raising a red flag about this bill are the reasons the statists love it. Statists, those people who want the government to control and run everything, much prefer an industry to be dominated by a handful of large companies, rather than to be divided among hundreds or thousands of smaller ones. It is much easier to regulate and control an industry when there are only a few companies to regulate. There’s not actually a lot of difference between the state explicitly nationalizing an industry (as in socialism) and the state forcing a consolidation on an industry so that it is completely controlled by a handful of large companies which the state can then regulate and control.

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