Dr. Stephen M. Ostroff

The Wall Street Journal’s May 22 Health Forum at the Four Seasons Hotel in Washington D.C. will feature 22 speakers, including several CEOs for big pharmacy and giant insurance companies.

But in a full-page advertisement, which WSJ has been running at the expense of its paper and ink, the top billing goes to Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb.

Scott Gottlieb

Gottlieb will complete his first year as FDA Commissioner on May 11. He returned a year ago to head FDA, where he’d earlier served as deputy commissioner for Medical and Scientific Affairs. The
Continue Reading Scott Gottlieb keeps FDA office hours while growing star power

New FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb claims food and tobacco issues are taking up a majority of his time. Maybe so, but there’s nothing on his public calendar to prove it.

Drug approvals and the regulation of medical devices usually take up more of the FDA commissioners’ time than the food side of the house. But Gottlieb says “the food center and issues related to tobacco” were dominating his schedule during his first months on the job.

Scott Gottlieb

Gottlieb spoke at a policy summit sponsored by the POLITICO news site. Keeping “big rulemakings on track”
Continue Reading New commissioner says his time is going to food safety at FDA

Poultry, antibiotics, Ionophores and activities with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency were among the subjects of April meetings between Al Almanza, administrator of USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), and people outside the federal government.

Almanza’s public calendar for April included five meetings, four before Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue was confirmed by the Senate on April 24. There was a noticeable reduction in meetings with outsiders at both FSIS and the Food and Drug Administration while the agencies waited for Trump administration leadership to arrive.

clocktable_406x250With both Perdue and FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb now on the job —
Continue Reading New leadership at USDA, FDA might increase outside meetings

Al Almanza and Carmen Rottenberg are keeping the coffee hot at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) but they are not getting many takers during this transition in government period.

officecoffeestation_406x250Almanza, the acting deputy undersecretary for USDA’s food safety office who also doubles as FSIS administrator, and Rottenberg, who has moved up to FSIS deputy administrator after being chief of staff and COO at the agency, did host meetings on food safety initiatives of interest to the retail industry and another on whole bird testing.

Almanza and Rottenberg met with Hilary Thesmar with the Food
Continue Reading Not a lot of outsider demand for meetings with “acting” agency heads

2017calendar_406x250The federal government’s transition month of January saw only a handful of meetings involving top food safety officials and members of the public.

Both the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and U.S. Food and Drug Administration report on meetings between their top officials and people outside the government. FSIS reports on those meetings monthly, while FDA issues a weekly summary.

Only two officials had meetings to report during January. FSIS Administrator Alfred “Al” V. Almanza and Stephen M. Ostroff, FDA’s deputy commissioner for Foods and Veterinary Medicine each had reported meetings before and shortly after Inauguration Day.

Continue Reading January saw few outside meetings for top food safety officials

The federal government’s top food safety officials made up in the second quarter for any lapses in their first quarter in reporting of their meetings with people outside the U.S. government. The so-called public calendars disclose after-the-fact who has gained valuable face time with top decision makers. markedcalendar_406x250At USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), the public figure with the most interesting public calendar is Al Almanza, deputy under secretary of USDA’s Office of Food Safety and acting administrator of FSIS. Who’s meeting with the boss of f the 7,500 food safety inspectors who represent FSIS at more than 6,000
Continue Reading Foreign officials, states and businesses want Almanza’s time