“More of a headache, more paper work, more junk to have to deal with.” Farmer John Aplin said.
John Aplin believes new regulations proposed by the food and drug administration will cause small farmers a lot of problems.
Last summer, there were multiple outbreaks, listeria in cheese and salmonella in peanut butter and cantaloupes.
The proposed changes rules would require farmers to make sure their workers wash their hands, their irrigation water is clean, and animals stay out of their fields.
“I hate to say it’s a joke to us, but if you read that regulation and think about the absurdity of that regulation you’re supposed report any animal that moved to or over that field. Stand in the field and count how many birds fly over that field and think about the audacity of having to report the bird that flies over a field.” Aplin said.
“It’s not impossible it would be very expensive.” Alabama Peanut Producer Association member Ed White said.
And expense is a major concern.
“The farmers or the producers have just about swallowed all the costs they can swallow. It’s going to be passed along to someone else.” White said.
And white says stricter rules could mean higher produce prices for the consumer.
But that doesn’t mean Aplin and white don't agree safety is important.
However, they believe food-borne illnesses could be decreased by better hygiene on the consumers end.
“Wash your food before you consume it. That’s not going to solve all the problems but that’s going to solve a lot of problems.” Aplin said.
Farmers say washing your hands at your house and also cleaning your fruits and vegetables can also keep contamination at a lower level.
“I just wish everyone would use common sense and be responsible and we would solve a lot of these problems.” White said.
A date hasn't been set yet for when the regulations would go into effect.