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HHS Releases New 10-year Food Safety Goals

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has set a wide range of public health goals to aim for over the next decade with the release of its Healthy People 2020 report. Among the objectives–which take aim at everything from obesity to oral health–are  specific new food safety goals.

The food safety section of the report uses average FoodNet foodborne illness data from 2006 to 2008 to set target percentage reductions for 2020.

Healthy People 2020 sets a number of percentage reduction goals as well as targets per 100,000 people, among them: 

—  33 percent for Campylobacter (from 12.7 cases to 8.5 per 100,000)

—  50 percent for E.coli O157:H7 (1.2 cases to .6 cases)

—  25 percent for Listeria monocytogenes (.3 cases to .2 cases)

—  25 percent for Salmonella (15.2 cases to 11.4 cases)

—  50 percent for hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS) in children under five (1.8 to .9) 

According to Meatingplace, a meat industry publication, the 2020 report is the first time HHS included health objectives based on commodity-specific foodborne illness outbreaks. The report focuses on reductions in E.coli O157:H7, Campylobacter, Listeria and Salmonella. Meatingplace published two simplified tables not the report here.

Healthy People 2020 sets an across the board reduction goal of 10 percent, for all selected commodity groups, and specifies what that improvement would look like in cases per 100,000 people:

—  beef (from 200 cases to 180)

—  dairy (from 786 to 707)

—  fruits and nuts (from 311 to 380 cases)

—  leafy vegetables (from 205 to 185)

—  poultry (from 258 to 232).

The entire Healthy People 2020 is available at www.healthypeople.gov/2020.

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