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Blogger claims USDA regulations targeting LDS canneries

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - A blog written by Kellene Bishop claims "LDS Canneries east of the Mississippi will no longer be canning any food at their facilities beginning June 27th, 2013, as they are no longer able to justify the abhorrent costs to keep in compliance with the ever-changing criteria set forth by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration."
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - A blog written by Kellene Bishop claims "LDS Canneries east of the Mississippi will no longer be canning any food at their facilities beginning June 27th, 2013, as they are no longer able to justify the abhorrent costs to keep in compliance with the ever-changing criteria set forth by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration."

Kellene's blog continues, "The canneries will still function as a center for pre-packaged bulk-foods for their patrons, but these items will have to be shipped into them now, pre-packaged in the LDS Canneries in the West."

Noah Bond's ABC 4 Utah broadcast at 5 p.m. on May 22 reported, Kellene's blog contains misinformation about canneries owned and operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints because Church spokesmen Dale Jones and Cody Craynor said government regulations are not restricting LDS canning at canning facilities.

Kellene called ABC 4 Utah and eventually talked with Bond.  She told him his report was slanderous and boldly defended the claims she posted in her blog.  She told Bond the Church will not openly confront the Federal Government because it would be too much of a fight.  She reemphasized to Bond all LDS canneries will halt canning east of the Mississippi June 27 because of USDA and FDA regulations.

Bond left a message with the secretary of Church spokespeople Ruth Todd and Cody Craynor Wednesday night to fact check this claim. 

Kellene said she talked with an LDS cannery volunteer who told her off the record about a government inspector who demanded one can from each box be tested at a cost of $100 each, but Kellene could not provide the source.

Kellene told Bond a worker in one cannery cried as she said a government inspector is making regulations like a moving target and impossible to comply with.

Bond was unable to verify any of Kellene's claims because she could not provide names or phone numbers to him, but Bond was encouraged by his management to flush out this story completely.  He will continue to call canneries all over the United States to fact check Kellene's blog. You can read it by clicking on the attached link.

Department of Agriculture spokeswoman Stephanie Chan did not return an email from Bond before this story was posted online.

Bond also called Senators Orrin Hatch, Mike Lee and Rep. Jim Matheson, but none of their spokespeople were aware of the alleged assault against the Latter-day Saint Church.

LDS Church spokeswoman Ruth Todd released this statement:

"The Church is not closing canneries and is not limiting the variety of goods available to church members. Over time we will be reducing the number of facilities where the packaging of dry goods occurs. Instead, Church home storage centers will offer the same or additional commodities in pre-packaged form, at no additional cost."

Craynor emphasized the reduction in the number of facilities has nothing to do with government regulations.

Bond also called LDS spokesman Matt Ball who represents the Latter-day Saint Church in California and Hawaii. He said a cannery in Sacramento closed.

Bond called Richard Montgomery who represents the Sacramento cannery and learned it closed and moved to Idaho because of State regulations on all businesses.




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