The number of workplace injuries for poultry processing facilities declined by 42% between 2002 and 2009, according to an annual U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report.

The number of nonfatal injuries stood at 17,800 in 2002, an average of 6.9 incidents per 100 workers. On the other hand, the 2009 number came to 10,400 injuries for the year, or 4.4 incidences per 100 workers. “The dramatic reduction in recordable injuries and illnesses is not surprising when you consider that over the past 25 years the industry has put considerable emphasis not only on complying with safety regulations but also on proactively tackling safety challenges," said Craig Wyvill, retired division chief of the Georgia Tech Research Institute’s Food Processing Technology division. "The industry’s efforts have changed the way safety is handled in processing plants today.” The 2009 numbers also beat out 2008, when 11,800 workers in poultry processing plants filed injury claims, an incidence rate of 4.8 per 100 people.