Hoyer Statement on the Food Safety Enhancement Act

For Immediate Release:

December 8, 2010

Contact:

Maureen Beach, 202-225-3130

WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today after the House passed the Food Safety Enhancement Act, legislation to further ensure the safety of our nation's food supply:

“Today, the House again passed legislation to give the Food and Drug Administration new authorities to protect our food supply and ensure that all Americans can have confidence that the food they provide their families is free of contamination. Action today, while critically important, is also long overdue. The House overwhelmingly supported similar legislation in July 2009, and since then, we have continued to hear about food safety scares and their dramatic impact on our way of life. Unsafe food does not only put the health and lives of Americans at risk; it undermines confidence and poses a real threat to Americans’ faith in our food supply. This lack of trust is harmful to both consumers’ peace of mind and our economic future.

“This bill provides the FDA expanded authority to inspect records relating to our food supply and to increase inspections of high risk facilities, provides protection for whistleblowers that bring attention to important safety information, and it provides for a faster, more effective FDA response in case we do see a food emergency. With the creation of a more accurate registry of food facilities serving American consumers, improved traceability of contaminated food, and stronger authority to quarantine and recall dangerous products, the FDA will be empowered to take quick action to address outbreaks and save lives.

“It is important that we move this legislation forward so that the FDA has the resources it needs to address threats to our Nation’s food supply and to provide consumers with increased confidence in the system.”

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