The FDA tells Reuters that it wants permission to open a field office on China so it has some “boots on the ground.” Rather than inspecting food, this proposed FDA expansion team’s main function would be to lobby the Chinese government for more stringent regulations. Be still our beating heart.
The FDA’s proposal for a China office appeared in U.S. President George W. Bush’s budget proposal for fiscal 2009, which was released on Monday.
It underscores the administration’s belief that it “cannot inspect its way” to safe food across the country. The FDA now inspects only a tiny share of the food under its authority.
Under the president’s budget proposal, FDA food safety spending at the FDA would grow by less than 10 percent, focusing on heading off problems with contaminated or otherwise unsafe food before it enters the marketplace.