Destin, Fla. -- The Joint Industry Safety and Health Council recognized 96 chicken and turkey facilities for outstanding safety performance through the implementation of innovative and effective employee safety and health programs. The annual safety awards were presented during the 2014 National Safety Conference for the Poultry Industry held in Destin, Fla.
The Joint Industry Safety and Health Council consist of members from the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, National Chicken Council and National Turkey Federation. Collectively, the three organizations represent companies that produce 95 percent of the nation's poultry products and directly employ more than 350,000 workers.
'The 2014 awards program resulted in a record number of award recipients despite more stringent requirements to qualify, further highlighting the industry’s commitment to workplace safety. Congratulations to these facilities and their management teams. The awards recognize their excellent safety performance achievement as a result of effective and innovative programs. The notable and constant decrease in illness and injury rates among poultry’s workforce over the last two decades is a direct consequence of their dedication to worker safety,” said the Council.
The total recordable poultry processing illness and injury rate for 2012 was 4.9 cases per 100 full-time workers (per year), down from 5.8 in 2011. This represents a 78 percent decrease from 1994 (the oldest data available on the BLS website), when the recorded rate was 22.7, demonstrating the enormous progress poultry processors have made in improving safety for our workforce.
Award consideration was based on injury statistics over three years and an evaluation of written applications by three judges: Gary Pohlmann of Marsh Risk Consulting, Doug Britton, program manager for Agricultural Technology Research at Georgia Tech Research Institute, and George Nassif of Aon Global Risk Consulting. Twenty-nine facilities received the highest level of recognition, 'Award of Distinction.' The other categories included 'Award of Honor' and 'Award of Merit.'