The FDA is set to receive $3.2 billion next year but they don’t yet have a plan to make our food any safer. That doesn’t sit well with Congressional appropriator Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), who at a recent hearing told Acting FDA Commissioner Joshua Sharfstein: “A lot sounds to me like buzzwords from a past administration.”
“A real change, a real change from the past would be a plan on food safety that identified the foods at greatest risk,” said DeLauro, who chairs the House spending panel that oversees the FDA budget. She also called for new performance standards, sampling to detect contamination and requirements for industry to report when problems were found.
The FDA is getting a 19% budget boost this year, in large part to help fund measures to derail the Chinese Poison Train. Beyond the extra taxpayer cash, Congress will let the agency charge food producers fees of almost $100 million so they can hire over 200 new food safety inspectors.
The acting head of the FDA says that they’re busy working on a plan to make food safer, and should have answers “in the next several months.” Ready, fire, aim!