The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)  should carry on with its work to reduce pathogens in meat and poultry, but first, the agency needs to improve documentation, add some timelines to its tasks and check on the effectiveness of on-farm practices.

Those three new recommendations by the Government Accountability Office (GAO),  the auditing,…

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-images-white-house-image18128229Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) are still waiting for answers to animal antibiotics questions posed eight months ago. The senators originally wrote to the co-chairs of the Interagency Task Force for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria in December 2014 wanting to know about how the task force plans to address issues…

papers_406x250Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) have requested that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) study whether creating a single food agency would increase efficiencies, reduce costs and improve safety. In January, Durbin and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) introduced bills to establish such a single food safety agency…

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photography-raw-chicken-drumsticks-close-up-image45080472Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) are asking Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to finalize USDA’s Salmonella and Campylobacter performance standards as soon as possible. In January, USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service’s (FSIS) proposed changes to the Salmonella and Campylobacter Verification Testing Program created brand-new standards for Salmonella and Campylobacter

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photography-mcdonalds-valencia-spain-june-logo-sign-blue-sky-valencia-world-s-largest-fast-food-chain-over-restaurants-image41622392Fast-food giant McDonald’s announced Wednesday that, within two years, all of the chicken served at its 14,000 U.S. restaurants will come from farms which raised the birds without medically important antibiotics. The move could help limit the overuse of antibiotics in agriculture which contributes to an increase in antibiotic-resistant bugs that sicken humans. “Our customers…

Food Safety News wrote a lot about antibiotic resistance this year — particularly the debate surrounding the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) plan to phase out the use of certain antibiotics in food animals, introduced in December 2013, and conversations sparked by the 16-month outbreak of multi-drug-resistant Salmonella Heidelberg linked to Foster Farms-brand chicken that…

Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) sent a letter Tuesday to Secretaries Chuck Hagel, Tom Vilsack and Sylvia Burwell, co-chairs of the newly formed Interagency Task Force for Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria, to ask how this task force will address gaps in how the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is currently…

Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) are calling on the Food and Drug Administration to step up animal antibiotic tracking. Specifically, they want the agency to propose a rule to improve collection of data on antibiotic use and resistance. “We applaud your agency’s recent step to issue…

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is recommending that the Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) take action to reduce pathogen contamination on chicken and turkey products, make sure that agency food-safety standards are being met, and better assess whether on-farm practices are effective in reducing pathogens in live poultry. In a…