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Seeking Trichinæ in Pork
By Franklin Horton
INCE the new pure food regulations went into effect, one hundred and fifty young women have been kept busy constantly with
microscopes at the Chicago stockyards, under the direction of the chief government meat inspector. The microscopic examination is required for all pork exported to most of the European countries, and the young women, in charge of a veterinarian, work from eight o'clock in the morning till half past four in the afternoon daily with their lenses, searching for the trichinæ, which, under the magnifiers look like the hair
springs of watches. The wages the government pays the young women vary according to their proficiency, some earning twenty dollars a week.
The new government regulations say the microscopic examination of pork shall be as follows: "The inspector in charge, or his assistant, shall take from each carcass a sample consisting of three specimens—one from the pillar of the diaphragm, one from the psoas muscle, and one from the inner aspect of the shoulder. These shall be placed in a small tin box and a numbered tag placed on the carcass from which they were taken, a duplicate of said tag being
placed in the sample box. The boxes "shall be exercised in the handling of shall then be taken to the microscopist, sausage, brawn, and other products of a who shall thereupon cause to be made a similar nature that are prepared from microscopic examination of each sample microscopically inspected meats. Such and shall furnish a written report, giving sausage shall be kept in separate locked the numbers of all samples affected with compartments, prepared in separate trichinæ."
rooms, and chopped in choppers used Carcasses affected with trichinæ are only for such sausage. Each ham and disposed of according to law. Those other cut shall be marked with a seal which have passed the test are kept in denoting microscopic inspection.” separate cellars "where no other meats This microscopic examination is costly, shall be cured, stored, packed, or la- the last government report showing beled.” Keys to these cellars remain in 9,020,521 pounds were examined in the the possession of the government in- year, at an expense of $53,934—an avspectors, and are handed to employes erage of 17 1-10 cents for each carcass when necessary.
examined, or three-fifths of a cent for "The greatest diligence,” says the de- each pound of pork exported, but in partment of agriculture regulation, the interest of health is necessary.
Catacombs Furnish Eatables
By William George
T30457 ORKING like moles in the What for? Mushrooms. It is the
earth, deep down under way they are grown nowadays—these the streets of some of the fungi which are considered a delicacy the greatest European cities, world over, and the work is so prositthere is a class of men en- able that available space of the sort de
gaged in a strange in- scribed is at a premium. Under the dustry. To meet a demand from the streets and buildings of Edinburgh a sintables of the rich they are delving among gle tunnel 3,000 feet long shelters beds the rocks, hunting out old catacombs and which produce 5,000 pounds of prime forgotten tunnels and paying for the plants per month, worth eighteen cents privilege of using them. They have a pound wholesale, at an average. In utilized old cellars, too dark and damp Paris some 1,600 men burrow in 'the and unhealthful for other purposes, and holes which abound under that city of even, in some instances, are operating in secrets in pursuit of a like employment. galleries of subterranean quarries which In other cities of France and of Gerhave been lost to the remembrance of many also the idea has been developed most men for hundreds of years.
and the industry is growing. And, near London, England, is 'a manufactory The mushrooms are grown either on which is devoted exclusively to produc- flat beds or on ridges constructed for the tion of the spawn from which the fungus purpose, as illustrated in one of the phois produced. This factory's output is tographs herewith. The beds are made 3,000 bushels per month and every bit of up in these subterranean gardens by a the spawn is sold and used.
combination of litter and fertilizer laid in • The growers of the mushroom aim to depths varying from six to sixteen make it one of the staple articles of diet, inches. The chambers in which the like the tomato or the banana, and to growing is to be done are heated to a create a general demand for it. As a temperature of 75 degrees and the spawn matter of fact the demand just now ex- is planted by breaking off portions of the ceeds the supply, but it is expected that brick and dropping them into the beds a steady increase in the amount of the at points separated by about a foot. If product grown will call for an extension the spawn is in proper condition about of the market at no distant date. Ameri- a month is required for the mushrooms can cities are taking up the culture and to grow. Proper temperature and air this means that wide advertising will supply are very important and a constant follow.
fight must be carried on against insect The handling of the spawn, or "My pests peculiar to the mushroom. The celium,” is an interesting process. This “plants," when they are grown to proper is the "seed" of the fungus. It appears size for market, are picked by men who as masses of white, cobweb-like filaments, understand this art and who use special running through a kind of mildew and, instruments for their task. The product for convenience, it is made up with a varies in selling value according to size, fertilizer and common dust into bricks. delicacy and color, and is priced accordIn this brick form, the spawn, which is ingly. amazingly tenacious of life, has been In France alone, the product is known to retain its power of germinating said to mount up into the millions of during a period of twenty years.