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The Forward’s Groundbreaking Coverage Of Sholom Rubashkin, Who Trump Just Freed From Prison

The Forward has been at the leading edge of reporting on a now national story about kosher meat and the conditions in which it is produced. Much of what has appeared in the pages of The New York Times and Wall Street Journal on this topic began with a May 2006 exposé by the Forward’s Nathaniel Popper on the working conditions at the country’s largest kosher slaughterhouse, run by Agriprocessors.

Before this, Agriprocessors had been the target of an undercover investigation by the animal rights group PETA. Issues relating to the treatment of animals were explored further in a Forward investigation that looked at the method of slaughter practiced in South America known as shackle-and-hoist.

But it is questions about the treatment of workers that have rocked the industry. First, Conservative rabbis responded to the Forward’s reporting by visiting Agriprocessors and initiating a new program, known as Hekhsher Tzedek, that intends to monitor labor conditions at kosher production facilities. After that development, Agriprocessors was the subject of a massive immigration raid that drew national media attention.

Since the raid, the Forward has continued its groundbreaking reporting. An article in the Forward about the immigration and labor issues at Agriprocessors’s Brooklyn warehouse led to editorials in The Boston Globe and the Los Angeles Times. Most recently, the Forward took the story in a new direction by looking at working conditions at Agriprocessors’s long-time rival, Alle Processing, and the broader kosher industry. For a look at how this story developed, here are links to the Forward’s coverage of the kosher meat industry over the past several years.


2008

12/24/08Kosher Industry’s Woes Reach a Poor Village in Guatemala

12/11/08How the Rubashkins Changed the Way Jews Eat in America

12/11/08Debate Highlights the Politics of Kosher Food, From Left, Right and Center

11/26/08Workers at Alle Kosher Meat Plant Reject Union in Contested Vote

11/20/08Kosher Updates: A New Arrest and More

11/20/08Turkey Trouble: Turmoil in Kosher Industry Affects Thanksgiving Meal

11/13/08After Jail, Agriprocessors Workers Face a Difficult Journey

11/10/08Fresh Out of Prison With No Means of Support, Slaughterhouse Workers Tell Their Stories

11/7/08Nobel Laureate Rigoberta Menchu To Visit Postville

11/6/08Shelves Empty as Three Plants Stop Beef Production

11/6/08Agriprocessors’ Bankruptcy Leaves Iowa Town Flailing

11/5/08Agriprocessors Files for Bankruptcy

11/3/08Third Kosher Slaughterhouse Halts Production, Heightening Worries About Meat Shortage

11/3/08Slaughterhouse’s Woes Leave Plant’s Diverse Workforce Idle

11/2/08Gruesome Scenes From the Poultry Line Are a Sign of Agriprocessors’ Troubles

10/31/08Bank Initiates Foreclosure on Kosher Meat Producer

10/30/08Kosher Plant Struggles as Owner Faces Arrest and Fines

10/29/08Agriprocessors Hit With $10 Million in Fines

10/2/08Orthodox Rabbis To Set Voluntary Guidelines for Kosher Businesses

9/25/08Averting Kosher Crisis, Meat Giant Hires Long-time Attorney to be New CEO

9/24/08Congressmen Take on Agriprocessors in Public Letter

9/11/08Conservative Movement Finds Unity in Promoting New Hekhsher Guidelines

9/10/08Kosher Industry Looks To Future in Wake of Agriprocessors Charges

9/4/08Workers Speak Out at Nation’s New Leading Kosher Producer

9/4/08As Industry Faces Criticism, a Look at How the Kosher Sausage Gets Made

8/27/08Editorial: Not Free To Desist

8/14/08In Rubashkins’ Backyard, Another Tale of Labor Strife

8/14/08Kosher Fight Turns Rabbis on Each Other

8/7/08Editorial: Judging Character — And Kashrut

8/7/08Store Owners Shift Gears as Meat Prices Rise

8/6/08Slaughterhouse Accused of Child Labor Violations

8/5/08Orthodox Leaders Tour Agriprocessors, Give Plant Clean Bill of Health

7/31/08Ethical Guidelines for Kosher Food Released

7/10/08Flacks for Agriprocessors Admit Online Impersonation of Meat Company’s Critics

6/26/09Kosher Meat Giant Kicks Off P.R. Blitz

6/19/08In Heated Meeting, Orthodox Activists Spar With Kosher Meat Company

6/5/08News From Postville May Be Treyf, but Kosher Consumers Keep Buying

6/5/08Kosher Industry Lacks Contingency Plan

5/29/08Kosher Plant Workers Find Refuge in Local Church

5/29/08Editorial: The Raid in Postville

5/12/08Immigration Authorities Arrest Hundreds in Raid on Nation’s Largest Kosher Meat Plant

4/30/08Activists Who Exposed Meat Industry Reveal Their Own (Kosher) Identity

3/24/08Iowa Fines AgriProcessors for Labor Violations

2/21/08Chief Rabbis Repeat Promise To End Slaughter Method

2/13/08Widespread Slaughter Method Scrutinized for Alleged Cruelty

1/9/08Kashrut Certifiers Fight Over Slaughterhouse Turf

1/9/08Kosher Meat Company Loses Legal Fight to Union


2007

11/21/07Major Union Protests Kosher Slaughterhouse

11/21/07Kosher Activists Strive To Slaughter With a Conscience

8/29/07Orthodox Call on Sinners To Give Chickens a Fairer Shake

8/9/07Food Safety Records Add to Woes of Nation’s Largest Kosher Slaughterhouse

7/11/07Video Renews Beefs About Slaughterhouse’s Practices

5/18/07Kosher Slaughterhouse Hit With Lawsuits

5/18/07Rabbis Move Ahead With New Certification Plan

2/9/07Orthodox Slam Effort To Monitor Conditions at Kosher Factories


2006

12/22/06Rabbis Pledge To Monitor Kosher Plant Conditions

12/18/06Conservative Rabbis Pledge Groundbreaking System for Monitoring Working Conditions at Kosher Plants

9/9/06Pot Bust, Meat Scam Hit Kosher Companies

8/18/06Workers at Kosher Plant Urged To Steer Clear of Union ‘Devils’

7/21/06Lack of Meat Choices Not Kosher, Say Conservative Shuls in St. Paul

7/7/06Animal-rights Expert Endorses Kosher Plant

6/23/06Immigration Fight Splits Locals in Iowa Town

5/26/06Editorial: Slaughterhouse Rules

5/26/06In Iowa Meat Plant, Kosher ‘Jungle’ Breeds Fear, Injury, Short Pay


2004

12/03/04Animal-rights Activists Take Aim at Glatt Kosher Meat Plant

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