So I really found this week’s Nestle article interesting. She discussed how it had been revealed that the White House had made some important cuts on the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Apparently, they discarded numerous standards related to food safety and processor accountability in the manufacturing of food safely. As I can’t really say it any more succinctly than Nestle herself, these are the cuts they made:
“The documents say that the White House deleted:
- Requirements for environmental monitoring for pathogens.
- Requirements for finished product testing for pathogens.
- An assumption that if environmental monitoring finds pathogens on food-contact, the pathogens are also in the food.
- Requirements for a supplier approval and verification program.
- A requirement that companies review consumer complaints about safety.
- FDA authority to copy company records.
- Added a year to the length of time companies and farms of all sizes have to comply with the law. “
I find that to be utterly ridiculous. Nestle attributes these cuts to things that would obviously be a benefit to food safety, and therefore consumer safety, to election-year politics. However, this happens time and time again even when its not an election year. If big corporations have politicians in their pockets, especially the president or cabinet members (cough, Bush, cough), the government will always make amendments and new acts more favorable to their “buddies”. Its very frustrating, and sickening, to see that politicians are willing to put the health and safety of Americans at risk simply to benefit themselves and their friends/political interests.