Sunday, May 20, 2007

Food Safety Oversight Changes Are Proposed

Lawmakers are pushing to put all food safety concerns under one federal agency
"I believe the food safety system is broken. It's collapsing," Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Connecticut, told CNN "We're unable to protect the public health. We're unable to protect public confidence in the food supply."

DeLauro has introduced the Food Safety Act of 2007, which would create a Food Safety Administration responsible for ensuring the security of the food supply from all forms of contamination.

Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, and Chuck Schumer, D-New York, introduced a companion bill in the Senate.
The call for this legislation is the result of a few high profile food poising incidents, the most recent which led to the death of thousand of dogs and cats when they ate tainted pet food. The FDA is currently operating with fewer inspectors and a budget shortfall at a time when more and more of our food is being imported without any oversight. A single agency to handle this sounds like a solid plan. In the age of homeland security, how can we be cutting inspections? Shouldnt the safety of our food supply have as high a priority as the safety of our airplanes? Will we wait for a major incident before we close the gaping loopholes in our system? Corporate lobbyists will be doing their best to stop any legislation that could interfere with their profits. It is up to the people of the U.S. to demand safe food at any costs.

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