Header graphic for print

Food Safety News

Breaking news for everyone's consumption


Public Health Groups Ask Congress For More FSMA Funding


On Wednesday, the first day of the new federal fiscal year, 16 public health organizations wrote to the heads of the House and Senate Appropriations committees urging Congress to add $50 million to the Food and Drug Administration’s budget so the agency can fully implement the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). “FDA estimates that it needs… Continue Reading

Why FDA Needs FSMA Resources Now

Deputy Commissioner for Foods and Veterinary Medicine responds to funding questions



(Editor’s note: The following is in response to “Experts Debate Whether Food Safety Funding is Adequate,” published April 24, 2014, on Food Safety News.) Two questions regarding the adequacy of food safety funding for the Food and Drug Administration were asked at last week’s National Food Policy Conference. I would like to answer both of them…. Continue Reading

Experts Debate Whether Food Safety Funding is Adequate


At the National Food Policy Conference in Washington, D.C., this week, a panel of experts discussed the impact of funding deficits on food programs. Martin Delgado, staff director of the House Appropriations Subcommittee for six years, spoke about how sequestration – the automatic across-the-board budget cuts in effect for most of 2013 – impacted the… Continue Reading

HIMP Debate Sneaks Into FY 2014 Budget Negotiations for USDA, FDA


Members of the Safe Food Coalition and the Worker Health and Safety Coalition wrote to members of Congress this week, asking them not to reduce the budget for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety Inspection Service and to remove language from the funding bill that urges the agency to move forward with its proposed HACCP-based… Continue Reading

Obama Administration Seeks FDA Funding Increase for FSMA Implementation


The Obama administration is requesting cuts at most agencies in its 2014 budget, released on Wednesday, but seeking a significant increase in funding at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to help the agency implement the monumental Food Safety Modernization Act. While the administration’s budget is very unlikely to be enacted, it underscores the White… Continue Reading

Congress Passes Bill to Avert Meat Inspector Furloughs


The House on Thursday passed a continuing resolution that will head off furloughs for U.S. meat inspectors that would have taken place this summer as a result of the sequester. The measure, introduced by Sens. Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Roy Blunt (R-MO), passed the House by a vote of 318 to 109 today after breezing through… Continue Reading

Washington Asks Whether Sequester Impact Was Overstated

Sen. Coburn To USDA: Less Wine Tasting, More Meat Inspection


Five days after across-the-board budget cuts, known as the sequester, officially kicked in at most federal agencies, some lawmakers and newspaper fact-checkers are beginning to seriously question whether the doomsday scenario painted by the White House was accurate. “The sequester hit — and (almost) no one noticed,” wrote Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza in a post… Continue Reading

Sequester Expected to Have Big Impact on Food Safety; Details Unknown

Taylor: Reducing funding at FDA "wrong direction"


Other than a memo put out by the White House earlier this month, which forecast reduced food inspections and meat inspector furloughs, there is not much known about exactly how the sequester, scheduled to kick in on Friday, will impact federal food safety oversight. According to the document put out by the White House Office… Continue Reading

Industry: Government is Obligated to Provide Meat Inspection, Even With Sequester


After the White House and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack suggested that the automatic budget cuts, known as the sequester, could force the government to furlough all federal meat inspectors, the food industry is arguing that such a move would violate the government’s legal obligation to keep inspectors at work. Furloughing more than 6,000 meat safety… Continue Reading

MDP Shuts Down; USDA Testing of Produce for Pathogens Halted


The Microbiological Data Program, which used to conduct 80 percent of all federal produce testing for pathogens like Salmonella and Listeria, officially shut down on December 31, a U.S. Department of Agriculture official confirmed. The $4.5 million program had been in shutdown mode since mid-November. State agriculture departments, which tested samples of leafy greens, melons,… Continue Reading