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Costco is choosing to dump 25 tons of peanut butter rather than donate it to food banks.  he peanut butter was produced by Sunland, Inc, which 18 months ago had an incident with salmonella contamination and 6 months ago declared bankruptcy. The product cannot be sold in stores because of cosmetic issues involving peanut oil, but has been extensively tested and has been shown to be safe.

But this is not an attack on Costco or other bulk retailers.  Rather it is an attack on a system of mass production that makes it preferable to throw away food rather than allow it to be eaten. It is the conservative ideal where, even if a resource is available, it is kept away from those who need but do not deserve it.

The waste here is staggering.  Five million grams of protien,enough for 300 kids for one year.  One million grams of dietary fiber, enough for 150 kids for one year.  All in a landfill. From a capitalistic point of view, the legumes belonged to Costco, and they paid to process them, so they can do whatever they want. At the very least, I would like to see laws where such things are not tax deductible so I am not paying for the waste.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Doesn't Go Into Landfills (9+ / 0-)

    It'll go to a rendering plant where the oil will be recovered for various uses and the protein will be used other industrial purposes.  

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:29:27 PM PDT

    •  Funny looking "rendering plant" (6+ / 0-)

      http://www.csmonitor.com/...

      Peanut butter dumped in landfill. Costco blamed.

      Peanut butter dumped in New Mexico landfill after Costco refuses to sell it or let it be donated. The dumped peanut butter was deemed safe even though it came from the Sunland plant linked to a 2012 salmonella outbreak.

      "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

      by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:39:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They didn't dump it (9+ / 0-)

        they refused the rest of the shipment.

        " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

        by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:47:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Eh ? (5+ / 0-)
          After extensive testing, Costco agreed to a court order authorizing the trustee to sell it the peanut butter. But after getting eight loads, Costco rejected it as "not merchantable" because of leaky peanut oil.

          Coll said "all parties agreed there's nothing wrong with the peanut butter from a health and safety issue," but court records show that on a March 19 conference call Costco said "it would not agree to any disposition ... other than destruction."

          So instead of selling or donating the peanut butter, with a value estimated at $2.6 million, the estate paid about $60,000 to haul the 950,000 jars of nut butter — or about 25 tons — to the Curry County landfill in Clovis, where public works director Clint Bunch says it "will go in with our regular waste and covered with dirt."

          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

          by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:50:17 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  What's your question? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Observerinvancouver, grover

            What exactly do you think happens at a rendering facility?  Do you think landfilling a recyclable product is destruction?  I represented a landfill owner for 15 years.  I pretty much know the breakdown periods for just about anything that still is landfill material.

            " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

            by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:53:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Are you kidding ? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              melfunction, eyo
               Doesn't Go Into Landfills (3+ / 0-)

              Recommended by:
                  gchaucer2, greengemini, Kevskos

              It'll go to a rendering plant where the oil will be recovered for various uses and the protein will be used other industrial purposes.  

              ...................
              What exactly do you think happens at a rendering facility?
              :  a plant that converts packing house waste, kitchen grease, and livestock carcasses into industrial fats and oils (as tallow for soap) and various other products (as fertilizer)
              ....................
              Do you think landfilling a recyclable product is destruction?
              Yup .
              Curry County landfill in Clovis, where public works director Clint Bunch says it "will go in with our regular waste and covered with dirt."
              ...................
              The last of 58 truckloads was expected Friday, the same day Golden Boy Foods of Canada was to close on its $26 million purchase of the plant.
              Here is a photo of it going into the landfill .
              http://www.csmonitor.com/...

              "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

              by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:07:18 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I honestly don't know (6+ / 0-)

                what your point is.  I rec'd bernardpliars comment because it is generally true.  I honestly don't get my definitions from wikipedia.  So you think covering something with dirt is destruction?  Well, the radiation people would love you to be in charge.  Cheap disposal.

                You may not care that a company is being responsible about liability, but no one would be asking your legal opinion.

                You've now worn me out with your blockquotes which have zero analysis because you don't know what you are talking about on multiple levels.

                But I'm sure poor kids would love your generous spirit of a gift of a jar of leaking peanut butter.

                " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

                by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:13:50 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  You are weaving all over the road (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  melfunction, eyo

                  and saying wild things .

                  because you don't know what you are talking about on multiple levels.
                  It turns out that you are the one who is failing to see the truth . You are insulting and wrong .
                  You may not care that a company is being responsible about liability, but no one would be asking your legal opinion.
                  Did I make any comment about
                  responsible about liability
                  ? If so please quote me .
                  But I'm sure poor kids would love your generous spirit of a gift of a jar of leaking peanut butter.
                  So you are saying that you think I made a comment about giving or not giving away the peanut butter ?
                  Please quote me on that .

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:27:01 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Do you not have any reply ? (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  melfunction, eyo
                  Well, the radiation people would love you to be in charge.
                  What a bizarre argument ?
                  I rec'd bernardpliars comment because it is generally true.
                  It wasn't true , it contradicted the diarist who was in fact correct . Anyone who bothered even to glance over the story would know that .
                  So you think covering something with dirt is destruction?
                  Covering over
                  950,000 jars of nut butter — or about 25 tons — to the Curry County landfill in Clovis, where public works director Clint Bunch says it "will go in with our regular waste and covered with dirt."
                  is destruction . There is no doubt that the peanutbutter is destroyed by this dumping into a landfill and covering over with dirt . If you don't think that is destruction , so be it .

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:49:01 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  More junk in these threads than in the landfill (5+ / 0-)

                    First, Costco couldn't accept a shipment of something that couldn't be sold. THEY didn't landfill it. Second, if the peanut butter was in plastic jars it was trashed, if it was in bulk it could have been rendered. That's not clear here, bu t seems it was jarred. And third, the diarist is attacking Costco for no good reason. Just to get "name in lights?" The real culprits are our litigious society and our inability to recycle--and of course, our horrible tendency to seal everything in plastic, which is another diary.

                •  I think you have me confused with the diarist , (0+ / 0-)

                  I think you are mixed up to who said what ,
                  I think that were you went wildly off course .

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:03:57 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Indycam Is On Another Cut And Paste Binge (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                tarkangi

                Well it should have been rendered because that's what happens to the millions of tons of contaminated food that gets recalled every year.

                A million pounds of suspect frozen ground beef doesn't get buried, it gets turned into dog food, cosmetics, and other products.  If it's a false alarm but if can't go out because the packaging has lot numbers that were recalled, it gets broken down and reprocessed as frozen meatballs, Chef Boy R Dee and similar convenience foods.

                I've got to go pack up a bunch of shipments, but Indycam is free to stay up until until the crak of dawn "proving" something.

                Keep searching Indyam! The truth is out there! Cut and paste stuff from the last two years! Victory is within your grasp!

                Gotta go!

                Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

                by bernardpliers on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:28:01 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Here is a cut and paste , not so much the truth . (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  melfunction, eyo
                   Doesn't Go Into Landfills (3+ / 0-)

                  It'll go to a rendering plant where the oil will be recovered for various uses and the protein will be used other industrial purposes.

                  You jump to wild "truths" before you bother to look and see what is real . This example above is just another one of so very many .

                  Does it bother you at all that you got it all wrong ?
                  Or does that just not matter to you ?

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:35:11 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

      •  I've read several articles (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Amber6541

        and they're all vague in exactly the same way.

        Costco owned the peanuts to begin with but it sounds like Sunland owns the jars of peanut butter.

        Did Costco actually prevent Sunland from donating the product? Or did they just refuse to buy it and donate it themselves? Or did they not want a substandard product going out with their label on it, even to a food bank?

        I'd like to know more.

        ....the legumes belonged to Costco, and they paid to process them, so they can do whatever they want.
        I would guess that that it's a little more complicated than that. Costco does not want to accept and pay for a defective product that it cannot sell. Who would?
    •  As the diarist didn't (22+ / 0-)

      provide links I looked for the story -- Christian Science Monitor.  

      The peanut butter was part of the assets in a bankruptcy proceeding.  It had been sitting at the bankrupt company's warehouse since last fall.  One of the reasons COSTCO gave for refusing the pb was

      After extensive testing, Costco agreed to a court order authorizing the trustee to sell it the peanut butter. But after getting eight loads, Costco rejected it as "not merchantable" because of leaky peanut oil.
      The pb was made from COSTCO nuts.  The company's lawyers made a correct decision re: liability.  Reselling the product puts the liability in COSTCO's lap -- not the bankrupt company.

      For some idiotic reason, the stuff was sent to and accepted at a landfill in New Mexico instead of a rendering plant -- which I thought was federal law.  COSTCO didn't make that decision.  

      " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

      by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:40:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I provided that link (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        melfunction, eyo
         Funny looking "rendering plant" (2+ / 0-)

        http://www.csmonitor.com/....

        "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

        by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:39:26 PM PDT

        And I did before you .
        For some idiotic reason, the stuff was sent to and accepted at a landfill in New Mexico instead of a rendering plant -- which I thought was federal law.
        Good to see that you admit the truth .

        "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

        by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:54:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Links? (5+ / 0-)

    It's the Supreme Court, stupid!

    by Radiowalla on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:29:35 PM PDT

  •  Costco didn't do this. (13+ / 0-)

    All they did was refuse shipment from a company that was on the verge of bankruptcy because they'd had foodborne illness problems in the past. The peanut butter company is who is choosing to dump the food.

    "Broccoli could take down a government. Broccoli is revolutionary." --Kris Carr

    by rb137 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:31:41 PM PDT

  •  25 tons is a tiny fraction of the overall problem (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, greengemini, Lujane, melfunction, eyo

    http://www.nrdc.org/...

    Environmental Issues: Food and Agriculture
    Wasted: How America Is Losing Up to 40 Percent of Its Food from Farm to Fork to Landfill
    Yet, 40 percent of food in the United States today goes uneaten. That is more than 20 pounds of food per person every month.

    "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

    by indycam on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:32:45 PM PDT

  •  Hyperbole much? (21+ / 0-)

    As Radiowalla asked -- where's the links to this story.  It is always preferable to get the source of the information rather than conclusions of someone who seems unable to put something in perspective.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:32:51 PM PDT

    •  no more so (0+ / 0-)

      "GOP's Obamacare spite means death toll for red states"

      no matter how you spin it, the product that "all parties agreed was safe" and was only not sold for aestitic reasons could have helped feed maybe 1000 children a good breakfast of a peanut butter sandwich for a year.

      New Mexico has 30% of the kids living a food insecure household, while the rate for most states is 20%.  Perhaps the word 'starve' is a bit severe, since in the US we mostly keep kids from starving, but other than that the essential fact remain unchanged.

      And of course this is not about Costco.  Any corporation would have made the same discussion.  And of course this is just a drop in the bucket. That is what the post was about.  That we waste food and let children go hungry.  It could have been Walmart, or Krogers, or Target or even Panera Bread.  But the story was about Costco, and even though I knew if changed the name of Walmart people would not have likely to become so defensive, I decided to stick with the facts as they were presented in the story.

      •  leaking peanut butter jars (6+ / 0-)

        are an aesthetic issue for you?

        Done here.  The denseness regarding this issue is wearisome.  You have your supporters.

        " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

        by gchaucer2 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:15:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Not about Costco, huh? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        happymisanthropy, terrybuck

        So the hyperventilating headline is just a hobby with you?

        For real Texas Kaos, you want texaskaos.net, not .com. Before you win, you have to fight. Come fight along with us

        by boadicea on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:31:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  lowt: it was not safe if it was leaking (0+ / 0-)

        under food guidelines.
        PERIOD.

        International guideline:

        Food safety when buying food

        always check the ‘use by’ or ‘best before’ date - if it is past the ‘use by’ date, don’t buy it

        check for damaged packaging - don’t buy dented tins, leaking cartons or bottles (eg, milk), ripped boxes or packets, broken or pierced seals (eg, yoghurt)

        avoid swollen chilled food packages and cans

        avoid products in loose vacuum packs (eg, bacon - the packaging should be tight around the food, with no air pocket)

        avoid chilled products that are not cold to the touch

        avoid frozen products that are not frozen solid

        avoid hot foods that are not piping hot (eg, cooked chickens, unless you selected them from the cooker yourself).

        http://www.foodsmart.govt.nz/...

        LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

        by BlackSheep1 on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 01:15:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Your title is very inflammatory. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bepanda, Noisy Democrat, Toyotabob7

    Could it not also be considered libelous?

    Live so that when your children think of fairness, caring and integrity, they think of you. H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

    by Ellen Columbo on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:01:03 PM PDT

  •  Peanut butter balls! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy

    "So, am I right or what?"

    by itzik shpitzik on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:06:13 PM PDT

  •  Silly, inflammatory, slanderous title. (21+ / 0-)

    So when you took a shower today you chose to let children to thirsty?  

    And if it's not about Costco than why blast them in your title?  Costco from all accounts is one of the "better guys" of big corporations.  

    Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

    by Jacoby Jonze on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:14:26 PM PDT

  •  "Costco chooses to let children starve" (16+ / 0-)

    is most certainly an attack on Costco.

    But this is not an attack on Costco ...
    Think straight; write straight <- not too much to ask.

    Dick Cheney 2/14/10: "I was a big supporter of waterboarding"

    by Bob Love on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:23:15 PM PDT

  •  Ridiculous title (9+ / 0-)

    the woman who is easily irritated

    by chicago minx on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:32:54 PM PDT

  •  asdf (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SoCalSal, terrybuck, worldlotus, grover, MJB

    "this is not an attack on Costco..."

    Yes, according to your title, it is.

    "Just because your voice reaches halfway around the world doesn't mean you are wiser than when it reached only to the end of the bar." ~ Edward R. Murrow

    by CJB on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:41:46 PM PDT

  •  YOU CAN'T SELL TAINTED FOOD!!!! (9+ / 0-)

    Even if it was shown that it "might" be OK, or that some of it was OK, you simply cannot put food into the system that cannot be 100% known to be safe.

    Dude, there are recalls every day. Some might only be for a label issue - the stuff still gets tossed because it cannot be safely sold.

    And you weep for the peanut butter that can't go to poor, starving kids? I'm more appalled that you think food deemed junk should go to feed the poor. Maybe we can take back all the recalled product that happens and give it to starving people.

    Me? I'd rather work towards ensuring we don't have starving people. I'd rather make sure they get food assistance (healthy food) and food stamps. Even better, I'd like folks to have a job that pays a living wage so they won't need food assistance.

    I kind of understand your ire, but I think it's a bit misplaced.

    Isn’t it ironic to think that man might determine his own future by something so seemingly trivial as the choice of an insect spray. ~ Rachel Carson, Silent Spring ~

    by MA Liberal on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:06:08 PM PDT

    •  common themes (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eyo

      Can't sell tainted food:
      Dude, have you never gone to the store and seen stuff that should not for sale.  If not, be grateful.  I see defective food packaging.  As a person who has done quality control, i can tell you 100% is never something that is achieved.  In this case we can make the assumption that the defect rate, vis a vis sealing the jars, was high enough that is was going to be more costly to pick out the bad jars and clean and sell the goo
      d jars.  It could be that 80% of the product was ok. No food is 100% safe.  That is fantasy.  That is why we have outbreaks.

      Starving kids don't deserve to be dumped on:
      This is a common conservative argument.  The ACA is bad because it assumes that poor people deserve bad health care.  SNAP is bad because is denies the people the opportunity to earn their food.  There were obviously some bad product, but that does not mean that 100% of the product was bad.  Even if only 40% of the product was properly sealed, the volunteer at food banks could have separated the bad product from the good product and provided some child with good product.  This also speaks to our over reliance of perfect looking processed food.  When I was a kid I had no problem picking berries off trees, sucking a honey suckle, pulling a carrot and wiping it off.  All these were superior to any candy I might have been given.  The plastic bucket of peanut butter were not even sealed.  

      Drop in Bucket/work to end starvation:
      Yes this a drop in the bucket.  But the point of the entire thing was in our processed food economy where aesthetics outweigh everything else it is cheaper and more acceptable to throw away good food than to provide it to the community.  Yes, some of the food was bad, but likely some of it was good.  Not throwing away good food is part of the solution.  Providing affordable, perhaps imperfect, not tainted food, it part of the solution.
      Here is one example.  Years ago I could always depend on older bananas being package in the store and solve for half price.  I would take the 10 pound bag home, freeze it, and use to make bread and smoothies.  Good healthy nutrition. Lately, I suppose because of bogus safety concerns, I find the old bananas much less often.

      Somehow we are afraid of leaky peanut butter, but have no problem or concern that these poor kids are eating at McDonalds or Taco Bell.  I think it is bad that the only affordable food is junk.

  •  Bullshit... (0+ / 0-)

    n/t

    The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis. - Dante Alighieri

    by Persiflage on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 03:29:43 AM PDT

  •  Overblown (7+ / 0-)

    This is exactly what Costco should have done.

    If someone got sick off that, there would be another diary of "Costco knowingly passes off unsellable food to poor children."

    This attack on Coscto is as stupid as it is unfounded.

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 04:33:04 AM PDT

  •  Peanut allergy (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    terrybuck, BlackSheep1

    One problem in donating it to chidren is that if it came into contact with the wrong child, a child with peanut allergy, it might kill them.  I wonder if Costco is imagining the headline -- impoverished child dies from food donated by Costco.

  •  not recced, not tip. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BlackSheep1

    Your biased title is absurd.  What's your beef with Costco?

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