The People Prepping Produce for Your Fast Food Aren't Too Happy With Their Working Conditions

Taylor Farms workers striking.

Photo courtesy Justice at Taylor Farms,

From Mother Jones:

By Josh Harkinson

If you've ever purchased pre-cut produce at Costco or Safeway, or eaten at fast-food restaurants such as McDonalds or Chipotle, chances are that your food was handled by workers at Taylor Farms. As one of the world's largest fresh-cut produce companies, it employs hundreds of low-wage workers in several warehouses in and around California's Central Valley. These are the people who dice the lettuce in your burger and mince the cilantro in your burrito.

Fresh-cut produce suppliers allow restaurant chains to reduce labor costs and ensure that their foods are prepared under sterile conditions. In response to E. coli outbreaks in 2015, Chipotle announced that it would stop dicing tomatoes in its restaurants; like many other fast-food chains, it now sources some of that prep work from Taylor Farms.

But these massive warehouses carry risks of their own. To prevent E. coli and salmonella outbreaks, fresh-cut produce firms treat their vegetables with chlorine and use other cleaning chemicals that sometimes can pose hazards to workers.

Read full article from Mother Jones.