Food Safety Bill Debate Possible in Senate

Bill to give FDA more authority could pass in lame-duck.

Published on: Nov 29, 2010

Congress gets back to work Monday following the Thanksgiving Holiday recess. When business resumes, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., promises they're going to finish the Food Safety Modernization Act. The act would give the Food and Drug Administration more authority to recall tainted products and regulate imported food. It also would increase inspections of food processors and require producers to follow stricter standards for keeping food safe.

The Senate version could be the one bill passed by this lame-duck session. The House passed its version of food safety legislation in July of 2009. If the Senate does pass its bill, it will have to go to conference committee with the House bill. The question is, when would that Conference Committee meet?

Senate Ag Committee Ranking Member Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., is working to restore what he believes is the original intent of the bill – to provide the Food and Drug Administration more focus and additional resources to accomplish its mission.