Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 76

ERGONOMICS
millions of dollars to implement and place onerous restrictions
on every entity from bakeries and pharmaceuticals to
school lunch workers. It would also have federalized workers'
compensation that's always been run at the state level.
However, after President George W. Bush took office in
2001, the Republican House and Senate passed the firstever
enacted Congressional Review Act, which allowed
Congress to strike down OSHA's regulation. Mr. MacKie
noted it would now take a two-thirds majority of Congress
to overturn that law, which, in essence, prevents OSHA
from enacting ergonomic regulations for the realistic future.
That's why there are no specific federal ergonomic
regulations today.
Since then, ergonomics have been driven primarily by
industry efforts to reduce injuries and cut costly workers'
compensation claims. And now, the labor shortage is providing
another incentive to make bakeries more hospitable
to new workers who are not industrial athletes.
" Nobody wants to see injured workers, " Mr. MacKie
In many bakeries,
so-called industrial
athletes are conditioned
to do tough
tasks over 8- or
10-hour shifts.
Sosland Publishing Co.
Labor costs, he said, are another significant cost factor.
" From a turnover perspective, when you have 20% to
30% turnover on some jobs, what does training cost for
employees who walk in and realize they're not an industrial
athlete and leave after two weeks just after they received
all of that training and the costs associated with it? " Mr.
Gabris asked.
Ergonomics then and now
From a historical perspective, ergonomics became a huge
issue for the baking industry in the late 1980s after OSHA
fined Pepperidge Farm, a part of Camden, NJ-based
Campbell Soup Co., $1.3 million. Specifically, the agency
cited the company's Downingtown, Pa., facility, where
workers manually topped Milano cookies, then handpacked
them in paper cups. Today at its nearby Denver, Pa.,
plant and others, robotics do all the repetitive work.
For nearly a decade after that fine, however, OSHA proposed
an all-encompassing rule that would have regulated
movement from inside the plant.
" It was a very 1950s command-and-control regulation, "
recalled Robb MacKie, ABA's president and chief executive
officer. " Whether you are moving boxes or ingredients or
stacks of trays, it would have regulated it. "
Mr. MacKie co-chaired an ergonomics coalition that
successfully blocked the rules from taking effect until the
late 1990s during the Clinton administration. Back then
the coalition, which included several hundred industry,
civic and government associations, estimated the rule, with
its massive outreach and special fines, would cost tens of
76 Baking & Snack December 2021 / www.bakingbusiness.com
said. " Particularly through the pandemic, we totally recognize
the contributions that our skilled workforce is making
and how essential they are to the industry. If safety were a
big issue before the pandemic, it is exponentially greater
right now than it was, especially with workplace shortages. "
The pandemic, however, did impact ergonomic efforts.
" Typically, we rotate workers every 2 to 4 hours, " Mr.
Gabris said. " That's one of the tools that every bakery
should be able to use. "
Some bakeries had to limit the amount of rotation because
of risk assessments early during the pandemic.
" If we had a COVID positive case, we literally had to get
people socially distanced and say, 'Where was John Smith
and who did he come in contact with for more than 15
minutes and within 6 feet?' Very quickly, we put in physical
barriers and masks, " Mr. Gabris said. " By limiting our
rotation, we reduced our risk from a COVID transmittance
assessment. So in theory, we had people working at the
same work stations longer, but we had them in less contact
with fewer people. It was strategically the right thing to do
at that time. "
Going forward, Mr. Anderson predicts the labor shortage
will prompt bakeries to become a safer, better workplace.
" I don't feel that safety regulations have been the driving
force behind automating with robotics as much as I believe
it has to do with reducing the reliance on a dwindling and
potentially costly workforce and reducing costs associated
with back and soft tissue injuries, " he said. " When maintained
properly, a robotic system can be very reliable and
cost-effective, and the end result is a more ergonomically
efficient and safer workplace. "
In the baking industry, industrial athletes may be the allstars,
but a more comfortable workplace remains an effective
way to retain employees in the future.
*
http://www.bakingbusiness.com

Baking & Snack - December 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Baking & Snack - December 2021

Baking & Snack - December 2021 - Intro
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 1
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 2
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 3
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 4
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 5
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 6
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 7
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 8
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 9
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 10
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 11
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 12
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 13
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 14
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 15
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 16
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 17
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 18
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 19
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 20
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 21
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 22
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 23
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 24
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 25
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 26
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 27
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 28
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 29
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 30
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 31
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 32
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 33
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 34
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 35
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 36
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 37
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 38
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 39
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 40
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 41
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 42
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 43
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 44
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 45
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 46
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 47
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 48
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 49
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 50
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 51
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Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 53
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 54
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 55
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 56
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 57
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 58
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 59
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 60
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 61
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 62
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 63
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 64
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 65
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 66
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 67
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Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 70
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 71
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 72
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 73
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Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 76
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Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 78
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 79
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Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 81
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Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 107
Baking & Snack - December 2021 - 108
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