Wednesday, February 26, 2003

damning herself with faint condemnation [NYT]
USDA secretary Veneman finally notices that congress eviscerated the Organic program while we were sleeping [in the porkiest bill ever]. The Times article has another instructive story about the USDA's priorities:
In Massachusetts last fall, the certifying agency, Massachusetts Independent Certifiers Inc., withheld its stamp of approval from an egg producer, Country Hen, in Hubbardston, because, the agency said, outdoor access plans were insufficient....

Displeased with this result, [the owner] Mr. Bass called on the U.S.D.A. The agency overruled the decision, without consulting the certifier, and cartons of Country Hen eggs continue to carry the certified organic seal.

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