Monday, January 3, 2011

Can FDA Afford to Implement New Food Safety Measures?

From Natural Products INSIDER

By Steve Myers

The passage of an ambitious new food safety act (Food Safety Modernization Act) presents a new challenge to an old problem at FDA: will the agency receive the funding it needs to implement the new system and effectively undertake its new enforcement activities?

In a press teleconference today, FDA Chief Peggy Hamburg said some of the mandated activities the bill requires of FDA were previously set in motion by the agency, so they will be theoretically introduced more quickly and efficiently. However, a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated the cost of the new food safety system at around $1.4 billion over five years. Hamburg, who said Congress has basically told FDA to build a new system for monitoring and enforcing food safety, was not terribly forthcoming about her agency’s expectations for receiving the funding needed to meet this cost.
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