I just had to throw in a couple of other comments about the article.
First, one of the commentors on the original article hit it on the head when they said, "...Americans have really started viewing food and meat products the same as, say, toothbrushes or iPods..." Its the reason so many of us no longer see food as a "seasonal" commodity and we get upset when we don't have fresh tomatoes in January or just picked apples in May. A lot of research and technologies have been brought together to make certain your food is ripe and available whenever you want it.
Second, the article missed the mark a bit on why they are built where they are built. Missy_pants touched on it mentioning that they use ammonia. Unionized/non-union, Ammonia/Freon...it doesn't matter. They all leak or have the potential to leak. I've found that the integrity of the systems depends more upon the attitude of the technicians and the dedication of the management to devote budget than anything else. But when things go bad, you don't want the refrigerant affecting to many people so they generally try to build them away from residential areas.
Ammoina vs. freon? Give me ammonia any day. No ozone depletion. No global warming. Its all ready applied as fertilizer to our fields. Its present in nature. Plus its "self alarming". The smell tells you when to get out. With the "freons", there's no real odor...you just pass out or worse. Look up R-22 asphyxiation and you'll find several cases of technicians succumbing to the gas.