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A slowdown in the establishment of federal centers of excellence in food safety mandated by the FSMA “could have an adverse effect on the progress that the U.S. has been making in foodborne disease surveillance,” warned a leading national food safety expert.
Proposed regulations for the livestock and poultry industries—most prominently those involving animal housing, environmental regulations, the use of antimicrobials and other drugs, livestock trading, and labor regulations—could increase production costs by 10% to 25%, potentially costing consumers as much as $16 billion annually, claims a new report commissioned by the United Soybean Board.
Chopped and ground meat and poultry products now bear the same on-package nutrition labels consumers commonly see on most other packaged foods.
Features: FDA User Fees Face Pushback
The Obama administration is asking for an additional $253 million in the FDA’s 2013 budget for the Transforming Food Safety Initiative, which is designed to help the agency implement the Food Safety Modernization Act.
A new standard from the Geneva-based International Organization for Standardization (ISO) sets out up-to-date requirements for food irradiation using ionizing radiation to control pathogens, reduce spoilage, and extend shelf life.
Features: FSMA Regulations Delayed
In January, anyone with an interest in food safety was watching their press releases from the FDA expectantly, figuring that the first in a series of regulations designed to implement the FSMA would be coming out at any moment.
With new rules for the implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act expected soon, at least two states are signaling their resistance with proposed legislation that would limit the ability of the federal government to enforce food safety laws in those states.
Features: 1,000 Inspectors Slated to Lose Jobs
A proposal by the USDA to phase out about 1,000 government inspection positions at poultry slaughter plants across the U.S. is a sensible move, said poultry experts interviewed by Food Quality.
With $3 billion slashed from its operating budget since 2010, the USDA has announced it will close 259 offices beginning this year—including FSIS sites in Lawrence, Kan., Minneapolis, Minn., and Madison, Wis., along with 15 of the nearly 600 U.S. offices of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
Features: California Takes Lead on Listeria
Listeria doesn’t just make consumers ill—it can bring an industry to its knees.