Technology aiding poultry industry
"Technology has changed the way the processing plants work just as much as it's affected the live operations side of the industry. Mike Tirrell, vice president of human resources and business services for Mountaire, remembers in the early 1980s, when the processing of a chicken was done entirely by hand. Today, machines handle the work that was once done by employees.
Burly workers no longer stack boxes onto pallets — machines do. Low-level laborers don't wrap the yellow trays of chicken in plastic — machines do. The job of processing plant employees these days is to supervise and assist those machines. Tirrell says that has enabled the company to grow without adding many employees.
That has helped keep the price of chicken down for the consumer, he said.
"The price of chicken is static," Tirrell said. "That's the result of efficiency in business."I underlined the key parts as it applies to labor. This trend is a silent killer of jobs on the low skill/low end of the labor market. While I fully understand this process creates jobs elsewhere in the economy, the workers in the chicken killin' business are not likely to be the designers and producers of the technology that replaced them.
The hope is their children will someday.
Stay in school, kids. Some jobs are just destined to fly the coop....Thank God. :)