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Food Safety News

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Dr. Elisabeth Hagen

Letter From The Editor: Fill USDA’s top food safety posts now

Opinion

UPDATED: So far,  so good. Secretary Perdue has named, on a temporary basis,  two USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) career employees to the top jobs. Paul Kiecker is acting FSIS administrator and Carmen Rottenberg is acting deputy undersecretary for food safety. A couple days ago we ran Al Almanza official farewell message. He’s been… Continue Reading

Chipotle’s food safety officials recently visited Washington D.C.

James Marsden, top food safety official for Chipotle Mexican Grill, and Dr. Elisabeth Hagen, who joined the Denver-based burrito chain’s Food Safety Advisory Board in January, met on June 1 with top officials at USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service. Hagen was USDA under secretary for food safety from 2010 to 2013. Her return with Marsden… Continue Reading

Food safety expertise could trump ho-hum ag appointment

One of the nation’s past top food safety officials might be named Secretary of Agriculture by President-elect Donald J. Trump. Cuban-born Texan Professor Elsa Murano, who served as U.S. Under Secretary of Agriculture for Food Safety in the administration of President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2004, is a late edition to a list… Continue Reading

The Year’s Top Ten Food Safety Stories

Here are the Top Ten  food safety stories  for 2015 as compiled by Food Safety News.   No. 1—The massacre on Dec. 2, 2015  of 14 people in San Bernardino County, CA mostly involved those responsible for local food safety and related county health inspections and the homicides were  carried out by Islamic extremists, including… Continue Reading

Letter From the Editor: A 10-Year Term is the Vacancy Solution

Opinion

It has been almost two years since Dr. Elisabeth Hagen stepped down as our most recent USDA under secretary for food safety. President Obama has not appointed, nor has the Senate confirmed, anyone to fill that vacancy since Hagen departed. It’s now also been 21 years since, on Oct. 19, 1994, President Bill Clinton signed the Agricultural… Continue Reading

Letter From the Editor: Mechanically Tenderized Steaks

Opinion

We’ve let the news spoil several holidays and many a Friday night. Christmas 2009 comes to mind, probably because it was the first. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was chasing down a cluster of E. coli O157:H7 cases just hours before the holiday. We wanted the story. Then, on Christmas Eve, National… Continue Reading

FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg Leaving the Agency Next Month

The commissioner’s job at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is coming open at the end of March. FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, the 59-year-old physician who graduated from Harvard Medical School, announced Thursday that she would be leaving her post next month after serving for almost six years. Dr. Stephen Ostroff, chief scientist at… Continue Reading

The Annual Food Safety News Christmas Day ‘Nice List’

Editor’s note: We continue with our Food Safety News holiday tradition by publishing our fifth annual Christmas Day “nice” list, calling out a few folks we think are worthy of some positive mention based on their contributions to food safety during the past year. This year, we separated the “naughty,” published yesterday, from today’s “nice.”… Continue Reading

Letter From the Editor: A 10-Year Term

Dr. Elisabeth Hagen is departing government in mid-December, again leaving America without a Senate-confirmed under secretary for food safety. How common are these periods when USDA is without an under secretary for food safety? More common than not, it seems. It was just over 19 years ago, on Oct. 19, 1994, that President Bill Clinton… Continue Reading

USDA’s Hagen Addresses Rep. DeLauro on Inspector IT Network

Dr. Elisabeth Hagen, Under Secretary of Food Safety for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, wrote a letter to Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) last week regarding DeLauro’s concerns over a reportedly problematic computer network used by USDA meat inspectors. The letter came as a response to an open letter DeLauro wrote to Hagen on Aug. 23… Continue Reading