Friday, August 13, 2010

S 510, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, is still alive

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, issued the following statement on the manager's package for The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act. The  full manager's package (over 200 pages) is available on Bill Marler's site:  S. 510 - FDA Food Safety Modernization Act.
"For far too long, the headlines have told the story of why this measure is so urgently needed: foodborne illness outbreaks, product recalls and Americans sickened over the food they eat. This 100-year-old plus food safety structure needed to be modernized," said Harkin.
"I am pleased that after a great deal of time and effort from members on both sides of the aisle, we have a strong, bipartisan proposal that will overhaul our current food safety system – a system that right now fails far too many American consumers. I am confident that the remaining details will be worked out and am hopeful that the measure will come to the Senate floor as soon as possible."
The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act passed the HELP Committee without a single dissenting vote on November 18, 2009. The bill is supported by dozens of industry and consumer organizations including the Center for Science in the Public Interest, the Consumer Federation of America, the Grocery Manufacturers of America, the National Association of County and City Health Officials, the National Restaurant Association and the Trust for America's Health.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Raw Milk - Two Perspectives

Bill Marler and Marion Nestle spoke with NPR about the safety (or lack thereof) of raw milk. You can read Bill's blog post here. Listen to the full 10 minutes at NPR here.

EFLA Congress on Private Food Law

The European Food Law Association (EFLA) Congress, which will take place in Amsterdam from September 15–17, 2010, is entitled "Non-regulatory dimensions of food law." Lawrence Busch, University Distinguished Professor, Michigan State University, will present the talk, "Quasi-States? The Unexpected Rise of Private Food Law."  He discusses how the retreat of the state led to the rise of a wide range of 'quasi-states' of firms, industry groups, and private voluntary organisations, pursuing their own aims and interests through private codes, laws, rules, and regulations. Whether they can achieve legitimacy and democratic modes of governance remains to be seen.

For more information, please visit