Brave public servants in Pennsylvania are protecting the people from uninspected pies:
Sold for $1 a slice, homemade pies have always been part of the Lenten fish-fry dinners at St. Cecilia's, located in this tiny city near Pittsburgh. Similar dinners are held in church basements and other venues across the country this time of year.
The problem is the pies are illegal in Pennsylvania. Under the state's food-safety code, facilities that provide food at four or more events in a year require at least a temporary eating and drinking license, and food has to be prepared in a state-inspected kitchen. Many churches have six fish fries a year, on Fridays during Lent. St. Cecilia's has always complied with having its kitchen licensed, so food made there is fine to serve. But homemade goods don't make the cut.
For those of you who want to help the war on pies but worry you don't have the chops to be a full-time food cop, don't fret. The authorities welcome the assistance of patriotic citizen-informants:
Mr. Chirdon says the pie episode has shed light on an often-overlooked aspect of food safety. "I've gotten a lot of letters from churches that are tattletaling on churches down the street that aren't licensed and don't meet standards for food service."
Unfortunately, the inspectors' fight doesn't go far enough: What about the home meal loophole? Every night across America, parents cook unlicensed dinners for their naively trusting kids, and perhaps even a guest or two. Are the kitchens dirty, the ingredients expired, the pots unwashed? We don't know! How many lives will be lost before the government steps in and says, ¡No más!?
[Via Blackstone in America.]