Critics: Three Percent Inspections Not Enough

Jan 27, 2004

By George Anderson

Critics say the Food and Drug Administration only inspects two to three percent of the produce coming into the country and that’s not nearly enough to safeguard the nation’s
food supply.

The recent outbreak of hepatitis A from imported green onions that killed three and sickened hundreds in Pennsylvania, along with the discovery of mad cow disease, has brought
the issue of food safety front and center for many citizens.

A report in USA Today suggests that part of the problem with protecting the nation’s food supply may be based on an allocation of federal resources.

Marion Nestle, a professor of food science and nutrition at New York University and author of Safe Food, told the publication, “Agriculture has three-quarters of the food-safety
budget for a quarter of the food in the food supply. FDA has one-quarter for three-quarters of our food.”

Moderator’s Comment: Does the U.S. system of food inspection need to be overhauled? How?
Anderson – Moderator

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