If you think the U.S. government is doing a sub-par job of keeping your food safe, brace yourself. You could soon be eating imported chicken, beef and seafood products that don’t meet even basic U.S. standards for food safety. The Obama Administration is allowing corporations like Dow AgroSciences, Cargill and DuPont, and industry trade groups like the Pork Producers Council and Tobacco Associates, Inc. – 600 of them in all – to weigh in on negotiations on two of the largest free trade agreements in world history.
Who doesn’t get a seat at the table? Consumers, farmers, even members of Congress. In fact, the President wants to “fast-track” the two agreements. That means Congress will be forced to vote on them, after they’ve already been finalized and signed, without benefit of the normal democratic checks and balances that include debate and the ability to introduce amendments.
The Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) pose direct threats to consumer safety. They will weaken U.S. and world food safety standards, threaten domestic and international food sovereignty laws, and allow transnational corporations to sue governments for alleged future lost profits unless the corporations are allowed to freely peddle their unproven, unsafe goods with reckless regard for existing food safety laws.