The First-Taste

The Impact of The Jungle by
Upton Sinclair on Food & Leglislation


What Was the Book About?

The book The Jungle by Upton Sinclair was published in 1905. The purpose was to show the world (in particular, the United States citizens) the horrible conditions of the meat packaging industry. There was in depth examination and explanation of spoiled, disease-ridden, and cross-contaminated meat.

What Was the End Result of the Book?

Once the book was published, it had produced an outrage with the public where they wanted to have immediate change. The 26th president, Theodore Roosevelt, had preferred big business, however, with the public outcry for change and pressures from the progressive reformers (a political group at the time) something had to be done. This law had increased the federal government's reach on big business by having stronger regulation.

What New Federal Laws Had Passed?

With all the backlash from the book, Roosevelt felt it necessary to take action through government regulation. As a result, the Meat Inspection Act of 1906 was born.

What Did the New Federal Law Do?

The law permitted specific people from the USDA known as inspectors to scrutinize, review, halt and type of meat from entering between different states and internationally. One thing that meat packing companies did recieve in the law was having the federal government pay for the inspections rather than the companies themselves.

What Does That Mean for Today?

Think of a time where a company has a cookout or potluck. There will probably be some sort of meat involved with these two events. From the legislation passed in 1906, the meat inspection act as allow people to feel confident in the food that they will consume is safe to eat.

There are many benefits to having a cookout or potluck as a work event such as an increased sense of community. One sort of business that relies greatly on a strong sense of community is a law office. It's important to feel like you are included and valued as you struggle through difficult times.

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