food safety regulation

produceThe San Jose Mercury News reports that Californians shouldn’t be surprised that the federal Food and Drug Administration is essentially abdicating its responsibility to help ensure the safety of fresh produce, most of which is grown in the Central Valley.

In fact, it’s hard to decide which is the worst part about the new guidelines offered Monday by the FDA: That they took seven years to develop or that they are non-binding, meaning food processors can simply choose to ignore them.

Now it’s up to the state to maintain consumer confidence in the safety of its leafy green vegetables, like lettuce and spinach. Quality greens are important for consumer health and are a vital part of the state’s economy.

The state should complete its plans by summer to impose mandatory controls on growers. The food industry should work with the Legislature to guarantee that a set of enforceable standards is in place that will guarantee that every food handler in the business complies. Continue Reading Mandatory safety rules best for produce industry

Frank R. LautenbergToday, United States Senators Frank R. Lautenberg (D-N.J.), Dick Durbin (D–Ill.), Chuck Schumer (D–N.Y.) and Hillary Rodham Clinton (D–N.Y.) and Robert Menendez (D–N.J.) sent a letter to the heads of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to call for the

Reuters reports that U.S. food and health regulators should set up a joint task force to study recent outbreaks of food poisoning and decide if better coordination is needed, several Democratic senators said on Tuesday.

Their letter adds to a growing clamor from Congress and the industry for reorganization of food safety efforts to deal