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US Senator Requests Immediate Action on Food Safety Efforts from FDA Commissioner

Chairperson of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), recently sent a letter to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner, Robert Califf, insisting on action following a report from Politico exposing lack of urgency within the agencies’ food safety and nutrition center; placing American families’ health and safety in jeopardy.


In the letter, Senator Murray refers to decades of FDA’s failure to regulate and enforce food safety standards on issues ranging from bacteria in vegetables to arsenic in baby food.

Citing both delays and lack of attention, the senator calls out FDA’s failing safety efforts, “… Despite overseeing nearly 80 percent of the American food supply, the FDA’s predominant focus, the investigation found, has been on drugs and devices, while food safety issues have not been prioritized by senior leadership… As one former acting FDA Commissioner put it, the food program is ‘on the back burner at the agency. Other officials described the program as ‘impossible,’ ‘broken,’ ‘byzantine,’ and ‘a joke.’” 


Senator Murray also noted that the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) was implemented over a decade ago; however, FDA has yet to enforce the standards required by the law. 


As food safety gains more attention, importers need to ensure a Food Safety Verification Program (FSVP) is in place should the FDA request to see your FSVP.

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