The Food and Drug Administration’s first Deputy Commissioner for Human Foods, Jim Jones, started his work yesterday and sent the below letter to colleagues.

FDA Commissioner Robert Calif appointed Jones after the agency’s embarrassing turmoil over the lack of a clear chain of command on the food side of its responsibilities. Internal staff and administrators, consumer groups, and an outside review panel from the Reagan Udall Foundation agreed that changes were needed. That agreement burst onto the public stage in 2022 after an outbreak linked to infant formula and a subsequent recall months later led to a nationwide formula shortage.

Continue Reading New FDA administrator says he is ready to cooperate to restructure the agency

EPA’s James “Jim” Jones was named Wednesday as the first FDA Deputy Commissioner for Human Foods. 

In an expanded position, he will fill the voids left at the FDA by the February departure of Frank Yiannas, who was the Deputy Commission for the then Food Policy Office, and the May retirement of Susan Mayne, who headed the Office of Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.

A Yiannas-Mayne rift was reported in 2022 that was so serious that they’d even argue about how food outbreaks should be investigated. FDA Commissioner Robert Califf, who came on board in February 2022, had little choice but

Continue Reading FDA Commissioner names EPA insider to agency’s top food safety post

— OPINION —

Dear colleagues,

As her service comes to an end on May 31, it is appropriate to thank Dr. Susan Mayne for more than eight years of professional dedication as Director of FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. Upon her arrival in 2015, Dr. Mayne made it a priority to learn quickly the ongoing issues within CFSAN offices while also providing leadership in an expanded applied nutrition component at the center. She brought a bright and upbeat personality and interacted frequently with CFSAN leaders and other employees on issues impacting food safety, applied nutrition, foodborne outbreaks

Continue Reading Letter to the Editor: Thank you to Susan Mayne for leadership at CFSAN

One of the FDA’s top food safety administrators is retiring.

Susan Mayne, Director of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), announced Monday that she will retire as of May 31. The Center is part of the Food and Drug Administration’s food program and is responsible for part of the agency’s food safety work.

Mayne has served as director of the Center for the past eight and a half years. Before joining the FDA as director of CFSAN, she worked for nearly three decades as a teacher and researcher focused on the health consequences of diet and nutrition

Continue Reading Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition director retires

From: Susan Mayne, Director of FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition

I am writing in response to the opinion piece published on March 13, 2023, titled “Be Best or Be Better,” by Bill Marler. The article references a letter sent by FDA on March 8 to the infant formula industry to share current safety information and call on the industry to take prompt action to improve processes and programs for the protection of our most vulnerable population. In the opinion piece, Mr. Marler charges the agency to do three things, which I would like to

Continue Reading Letter to the Editor: Food safety cannot wait — infant formula letter important to industry

Top FDA officials are calling on manufacturers of infant formula to clean up their act.

In a letter this week Robert M. Califf, FDA Commissioner, and Susan T. Mayne, Director of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, addressed concerns about infant formula along the food chain, speaking to manufacturers, packers, distributors, exporters, importers and retailers.

“FDA is sharing this information with you with the expectation that you will act to mitigate potential food safety risks in powdered infant formula in accordance with FDA regulations while further striving to improve operations, especially given the critical nature of these products,”

Continue Reading FDA wants infant formula manufacturers to step up work to prevent contamination

The FDA is inviting the public and industry leaders to join a webinar at 1 p.m. EST on March 2 to discuss recent draft guidance on lead action levels for foods intended for children younger than two years of age.

Questions or comments must be submitted by Feb. 9 at the link below.

For those that can’t join live, the webinar will be recorded and posted to the FDA website.

The draft guidance, titled “Action Levels for Lead in Food Intended for Babies and Young Children: Draft Guidance for Industry,” issued in January informs industry on the proposed action levels

Continue Reading FDA to hold webinar on recent draft guidance for industry on lead in baby food

— OPINION —

How food safety is best organized in a country this big and this populous is the question we should be asking. Instead during the past confusing year, we’ve come to focus only on the internal organization of the Food and Drug Administration.

We now know the timeline for food safety developments at FDA that captured so much attention during the past year.  We know from Frank Yiannas that before it became a media issue, the “decentralized structure” of the FDA’s food program “impaired the FDA’s ability to operate as an integrated food team and protect the public.”

Continue Reading Letter from the Editor: An independent food safety board is far better than anything FDA Commissioner does on his own

The question members of a Senate subcommittee wanted answered by FDA officials involved how to make food safety a priority at the agency. The FDA commissioner said much of the answer would come out when a “top to bottom” review of the agency has been completed.

During a hearing Wednesday, members of the Senate Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies most of the questions from senators came in the context of knowing that the Food and Drug Administration could use some more money. Most of the senators said that goes without saying. FDA Commissioner

Continue Reading Senators ask FDA leaders if food safety is a priority at the agency

Describing inspection findings at an infant formula plant as “shocking,” the head of the FDA on Wednesday told a U.S. House panel that the formula maker had failed, but admitted that the agency also could have done better.

The hearing with the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce found FDA Commissioner Robert Califf in the hot seat, flanked by FDA Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response Frank Yiannas and Susan Mayne, Director of the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition.

Califf by far fielded most of the questions and said
Continue Reading FDA leader says agency could have done a better job with investigation into infant formula plant