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Food Safety News

Breaking news for everyone's consumption

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association

Secretary of Agriculture choice not as difficult as farm policy

NEWS ANALYSIS

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When the bitter cold began spreading over rural America last month, the parlor guessing game around many a wood stove was guessing who President-elect Donald J. Trump would name as secretary of agriculture. But the time for that game has passed. The past three presidents all named their ag bosses by the end of the… Continue Reading

Montana unit of federal Beef Checkoff ordered to stand down

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One of the state units of the federal Cattleman’s Beef Production and Research Board (Beef Board)  will be effectively sidelined if a federal magistrate judge’s order is allowed to take effect. In a series of preliminary rulings that went almost entirely against federal Beef Board, U.S. Magistrate Judge John Johnston granted a motion by the… Continue Reading

More fighting over ‘the dollar’ threatens Beef Checkoff research

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Fighting over “the dollar” has intensified during the past 30 days, raising questions about the future of a longtime source of food safety research funding. “The dollar” is the Beef Checkoff, the $1 added on to the transaction each time there is a bovine sale, from ranch to feedlot, or feedlot to slaughterhouse, etc. It may not… Continue Reading

USDA Ends COOL Enforcement With President’s Signature on Omnibus Bill

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Effective immediately, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says,  USDA will no longer enforce the Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) requirements for beef and pork products because COOL was repealed by Congress. Vilsack said labeling regulations on the books will be amended “as expeditiously as possible” to bring the beef and pork provisions into line.  It means… Continue Reading

Is Country-of-Origin Labeling a Food Safety Issue?

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Country-of-origin labeling (COOL) is not a food safety issue. Except when it is. The law requires that much of our food be labeled with its source country, but the requirement that meat be labeled with the specific country where the animal was born, raised and slaughtered is currently an issue at the World Trade Organization… Continue Reading

Farm Bill: No Repeal of Country-of-Origin Labeling

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Livestock groups are expressing disappointment that “a fix” to country-of-origin labeling (COOL) was not included in the final farm bill and warning that they plan to actively oppose its passage through Congress. “COOL is a broken program that has only added costs to our industries without any measurable benefit for America’s livestock producers,” read a… Continue Reading

Beef Research Money Tied to Record Low Cattle Population

America's cattle numbers are lower than ever, but safety research hangs on

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Beef lovers, you might want to make sure you’re sitting down. In 2013, the population of cattle in the U.S. hit its lowest point since the 1950s. It might not look like it from the line at the fast-food drive-through, but America’s herd size has actually been in decline since its peak in 1975, when… Continue Reading

Reagan Reflects on Food-Safety Record at Cattlemen’s Beef Association

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Looking back on his time at the the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, James “Bo” Reagan tends to focus on his work within the beef industry to help beat back the threat of E. coli. In the unending war between an entire industry and a single bacterium, he has likely led more battles than anyone else…. Continue Reading

Vilsack: With Sequester, USDA Would Have “No Choice” But to Furlough Food Safety Inspectors

Cattlemen accuse administration for playing politics with meat inspection

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Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and the White House have caused quite a stir in food and agriculture circles by warning that budget sequestration could lead to a two-week furlough of federal meat inspectors, which would effectively halt American meat and poultry processing. The meat industry has responded by arguing that the U.S. Department of Agriculture… Continue Reading

Jack in the Box and the Decline of E. coli

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In 1993, 623 people in the western U.S. fell ill with a little-known bacteria called E. coli O157:H7. Ultimately, four children would die from their infections; many others suffered long-term medical complications. The bug was later traced to undercooked hamburger served at Jack in the Box restaurants. This outbreak thrust foodborne illness onto the national stage… Continue Reading