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White House Launches Task Force to Help Pollinators Recover

The Obama administration released a presidential memorandum last week establishing a federal strategy for reversing the declining populations of pollinators such as bees and butterflies. Over the past decade, populations of bees and other pollinators have drastically fallen, threatening the stability of a large proportion of crops worldwide which rely on such insects to pollinate them…. Continue Reading

White House Releases Spring 2014 Regulatory Plan

The White House has released its “Current Regulatory Plan and the Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions” for Spring 2014. When Food Safety News reported on the Fall 2013 agenda, we told you about the food safety issues in development at the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration. All of the… Continue Reading

100-Plus Groups Ask Obama to Ditch New Poultry Rules

More than 100 organizations signed a letter sent to President Obama on Thursday asking the White House to withdraw the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s proposed rule on the “Modernization of Poultry Slaughter Inspection.” The organizations signing on to the letter cover a range of interests, from organic food retailers such as Hummingbird Wholesale to groups… Continue Reading

Fall 2013 White House Regulatory Plan Includes Many Food Safety Rules

The White House put out its “Current Regulatory Plan and the Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions” for Fall 2013 on Nov. 26, and it lists a number of food safety issues that the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration will be dealing with over the next several months…. Continue Reading

Documents Show OMB Weakened FDA’s Food Safety Rules

The White House Office of Management and Budget significantly weakened the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s draft food safety rules, documents posted on the Federal Register last week show. The hundreds of pages of documents, first discovered and reported by Food and Chemical News (subscription only) on Friday, confirm what food safety insiders had suspected… Continue Reading

White House: Sequestration Would Mean Big Cuts to Food Safety Inspections

If Congress allows the sequester to kick in on March 1, cuts to food safety would be one of the “most damaging” consequences of the automatic budget reductions, according to a memo put out by the White House on Friday. The analysis by the Obama administration’s Office of Management and Budget said the U.S. Food… Continue Reading

Proposal to Label Mechanically Tenderized Meat Remains Under Review at OMB

A proposed rule by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service to label mechanically tenderized beef products is now under extended review at the White House Office of Management and Budget. Food safety advocates, the meat industry and FSIS said they do not know details about the status of the review or… Continue Reading

White House Turns Down Raw Milk Petition

The Obama administration delivered its official response last week to the 6,078 signors of a petition on WhiteHouse.gov who requested federal-level legalization of all raw milk sales. The response indicated that the White House continues to support the current regulation of raw milk sales, which allow states to determine legality but prohibits its sale across… Continue Reading

Top USDA Advisor Heads to White House

David Lazarus, a senior advisor to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, is moving to the White House to serve as advisor to President Obama on agriculture and rural affairs, a position on the Domestic Policy Council that has been vacant for 18 months. Lazarus, who made the transition from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) yesterday,… Continue Reading