Where Local and Global Appetites Collide

Food Safety, the FDA, You, and Your Legislators

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A request from Food & Water Watch…

Food recalls seem to be happening on a regular basis these days, but even the most diligent label checker had trouble during last month’s recall of hydrolyzed vegetable protein. This food additive rarely shows up on labels because it’s usually listed as “seasoning” or “natural flavoring.”  But whether or not consumers had ever heard of it, salmonella contamination of this additive from one large manufacturer led to a chain reaction of recalls of processed food items across the country.  According to Food & Water Watch, to make matters worse, the manufacturer knew about the contamination and took weeks to tell its customers.  Can you take action to help make sure contaminated food doesn’t end up on your plate?

While we add this to the growing list of food recalls, the Senate is working on a bill to reform the Food and Drug Administration.  The FDA is supposed to make sure fruits, vegetables, processed foods and imported foods are safe, but many of the food recalls over the last couple of years have exposed their deeply flawed system.

The current Food Safety Bill still needs some work.  Less than one percent of food that’s imported into the U.S. is inspected for food safety.  We need strong standards for imports that will protect consumers.  Additionally, we need to make sure the FDA standards work for farmers and processors of all sizes, and include flexibility, not one-size-fits-all rules that are geared toward the largest operations.

We won’t get many chances to fix our broken food safety system, so let your senators know how to make the food safety legislation stronger to protect the food that ends up on your plate:

Thanks for taking action,
Sarah Alexander, Outreach Director
Food & Water Watch

P.S. Blogger’s note: I receive so many food recalls, I don’t know what to do with them, only a small portion of food recalls are posted here. If I had to post them all, I would never leave the house.

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