Congress has been very busy during this lame-duck session. Perhaps accomplishing more work than was expected prior to the November elections. Of importance to all is the status of the food safety bill. By a vote of 215 to 144, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Food Safety Modernization Act, enacting large-scale changes to the nation's food safety system. The legislation now goes to the President for his signature.
United Fresh Produce Association Senior Vice President of Public Policy Robert Guenther says the legislation ensures a number of important provisions that they have long supported, including implementation of preventive controls for production and processing of specific fruits and vegetables when shown necessary by a risk-based, scientific analysis by FDA.
However, Guenther says the good in this bill is still accompanied by the bad, and still contains an amendment that threatens the health and well-being of a nation of consumers by exempting some producers and processors based only on the size of their business, their geographic location, or to whom they sell their products.