Thursday, December 07, 2017

Meat and poultry workers achieve best workplace safety year ever in 2016

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture photo

"U.S. meat and poultry packers and processors continued to make significant progress in workplace safety in 2016, as the newly released Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) incidence rate for non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses reached an all-time industry low," Morning Ag Clips reports.

In 2016 there were 5.3 occupational injuries and illnesses per 100 full-time workers in the meat and poultry industry, down from 5.4 in 2015; the number of non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses has decreased more than 36 percent since 2007. Of those 5.3 average cases. 3.8 were serious injuries, down from 3.7 in 2015. Those figures do not count temporary or part-time workers.

"In the early 1990s, the Meat Institute declared worker safety a non-competitive issue, which encouraged member companies to collaborate to find solutions that prioritized and enhanced worker safety," Morning Ag Clips reports. "The meat industry, together with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) union, also developed Voluntary Ergonomic Guidelines for the Meat Packing Industry — guidelines that OSHA called a 'model' for other industries."

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