When It Comes To Food, “Generally Recognized As Safe” May Not Mean What It Sounds Like

MeneerDijk

Here in the U.S., we have food safety regulations — a lot of them. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for making sure foods (and a bunch of other stuff) adhere to some basic health and safety rules to reduce the likelihood these products will hit store shelves and make a million people sick. So far, so good… but there’s a major food safety system that the FDA uses that, it turns out, is neither standard nor safe — despite its name.

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Chris Rief

The FDA Doesn’t Actually Have The Power To Recall Cosmetics That Harm People

Last month, the Food and Drug Administration announced that it would be investigating claims from consumers that the “cleansing conditioner” Wen, purportedly developed by celebrity hairstylist Chaz Dean, had caused scalp irritation and even made some users’ hair fall out. The FDA looked into the situation after receiving 127 complaints about the product, but didn’t know that the marketer, Proactiv maker Guthy-Renker, had received more than 21,000 complaints about the product that it wasn’t obligated to report to the FDA. [More]

shawncampbell

Probably Avoid These Skin Care Products If You Don’t Want Mercury Poisoning

Mercury poisoning doesn’t sound fun, but it also doesn’t necessarily sound like something the average consumer runs into a lot in modern cosmetic aisles, what with federal regulations banning dangerous levels of the stuff. However, there are a slew of illegal skin care products for sale out there that contain mercury, and the Food and Drug Administration doesn’t want folks slathering them on their bodies. [More]

Florida Officials Investigating 4 Cases Of Zika That May Have Been Transmitted By Mosquitoes

frankieleon

For the first time in the U.S., health officials believe local mosquitoes may have transmitted the Zika virus to humans. [More]

Anyone Can Make & Market A Dietary Supplement, Including Consumer Reports

Anyone Can Make & Market A Dietary Supplement, Including Consumer Reports

When you see ads for dietary supplements, there are often scientists in lab coats looking at beakers and flasks, saying science-y things. In the real world, just about anyone with a credit card can make and market a supplement, even one that contains potentially unhealthy ingredients. Just ask our colleagues at Consumer Reports, the creators of the new (totally fake) weight-loss supplement Thinitol. [More]

Chaz Dean

FDA Investigating Hair Loss Claims Linked To “WEN By Chaz Dean” Products

Haircare products are supposed to do just that — care for your hair. So when consumers start reporting hair loss, balding, itching, and rash associated with using a certain product, the Food and Drug Administration is going to take those reports seriously. [More]

Edward Kammerer

Here’s How AstraZeneca Is Trying To Block Generic Crestor For 7 More Years

How long should a drug company be allowed to be the exclusive manufacturer and seller of their product? Crestor, a best-selling statin (cholesterol-lowering drug) that has enjoyed exclusivity for the last 12 years, is due to lose that protection today. AstraZeneca, the maker of Crestor, is fighting that decision, hoping to squeeze a little more time as the drug’s exclusive manufacturer before generics hit the market. [More]

Megan Sparks

FDA: Stop Eating Raw Cookie Dough Or Making Home-Made Play-Dough For Now

For years, raw chocolate chip cookie dough was a forbidden treat. Everyone said — rightly or wrongly — that you shouldn’t consume it because the uncooked eggs could make you sick. Then came special commercial dough preparations that worked around that, and there was much rejoicing (and many ice cream sales). But now, alas, cookie dough is back off the table, as are any other uncooked treats… and this time, it’s all down to the flour.

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Muffet

FDA Wants Proof That Antibacterial Hand-Sanitizing Products Are Actually Effective

While you may have a personal choice of antibacterial hand-sanitizing product to wipe, slather, and squirt your way to germ-free mitts, there’s one thing all those products all have in common: they should actually work. [More]

Sigma.DP2.Kiss.X3

Does Knowing The Calorie Count Change What Food You Decide To Order Online?

When the Food and Drug Administration’s new calorie labeling rules go into effect next year, consumers will not only see calorie counts on menu boards in stores, but in online menus as well. But will coming face-to-face with your caloric decisions change what you order when you order food online? [More]

SchuminWeb

Senators Trying To Strike Down Vermont GMO Labeling Law At Last Minute

Two years ago, Vermont became the first state to pass a law requiring clear disclosures of foods containing genetically modified/engineered ingredients. A number of packaged food giants — including PepsiCo, Mars Inc., General Mills, and Campbell Soup Co. — have already made the decision to label their products on a nationwide basis in advance of the July 1 start of the new rules. With that deadline approaching, a pair of agribusiness-backed senators have introduced legislation that would kill the Vermont law, prevent other states from enacting similar regulations, and give companies two years to create a label with little to no information. [More]

Glyn Lowe Photoworks

Whole Foods Has 15 Days To Address Food Safety Violations At Plant

Listeria and other unsanitary conditions were found at a Whole Foods plant in Massachusetts earlier this year, the Food and Drug Administration revealed in a warning letter telling the grocery store chain to take immediate action to fix the issues.  [More]

Teva Pharmaceuticals Pulling Zecuity Migraine Patch After Users Reported Burns, Scars

Teva Pharmaceuticals Pulling Zecuity Migraine Patch After Users Reported Burns, Scars

Having a migraine can bad enough, but getting literally burned by a product that’s supposed to help alleviate that pain makes it an even more painful experience. That’s why the makers of a patch called Zecuity, which is marketed for migraine relief, are yanking it from shelves, after users reported burns and scarring. [More]

Joel Zimmer

FDA And International Enforcement Superfriends Take Down Online Peddlers Of Unapproved Drugs

Hundreds of millions of years ago, the seven continents that we know today were one big land glob called Pangaea. When choosing a name for an international operation to nab sellers of unapproved drugs, regulators and law enforcement agencies took this idea of one united world and called their project “Pangea,” or the International Internet Week of Action. Led by Interpol, agencies took action to look for unapproved drugs passing in the mail. [More]

Natasha L.

Inspector General: FDA Still Takes Too Long To Recall Tainted Food Products

Five years ago, the Food Safety Modernization Act granted the Food and Drug Administration the statutory authority to compel food producers to recall tainted products. However, a new report from a federal investigator shows that people are falling ill while the FDA sometimes takes months to issue recalls, even after it has evidence of contamination. [More]

JD Hancock

The FDA Wants You To Eat Less Salt, Hopes The Food Industry Will Help With That

When it comes to salt, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration agrees with the Centers for Disease Control: we’re all consuming too much sodium, and the food industry should be helping us cut back by cutting it from their products. [More]

sara marlowe

FDA: ‘Evaporated Cane Juice’ Is Just Sugar, Deal With It

What’s “evaporated cane juice”? It’s a sweetener produced from the liquid that comes out of sugar cane when you cut or shred it. However, the Food and Drug Administration notes that it’s also a term that food producers use in ingredients list to avoid using the word “sugar.” The FDA has had enough of this, and issued guidance telling food marketers that they need to just call ECJ what it is: sugar. [More]

Dan Domme

Those Updated Nutrition Labels On All Your Packaged Food Are Finally Happening

It’s something most of us learned to do decades ago: you see an inviting package on the supermarket shelf. You pick it up, have a look at the front to see if you might like that flavor, and then flip it over to stare intently at the familiar white nutrition label on the back. Well now, finally, after much hemming and hawing, those nutrition labels are getting an overdue upgrade.

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