Friday, October 19, 2007

Safe Food Act 2007, Current Sponsors

In light of the "more than 28 million pounds" (see below for quote source) of possibly tainted food removed from circulation in 2007 alone, I was prompted to take a look at the current sponsors of the Safe Food Act 2007. Since my last look, two more House members have added their names.

The complete list of sponsors of the Safe Food Act 2007 today is:

Along with the Senate sponsor of the bill, Senator Richard Durbin [IL], there are 3 Senate cosponsors:
Senator [State] - Date of Cosponsorship
Sen Schumer, Charles E. [NY] - 2/15/2007
Sen Casey, Robert P., Jr. [PA] - 3/21/2007
Sen Clinton, Hillary Rodham [NY] - 5/8/2007     2008 Presidential Candidate
Along with the House sponsor of the bill, Representative Rosa DeLauro [CT-3], there are 17 House cosponsors:
Representative [State - Congressional District] - Date of Cosponsorship
Rep Kaptur, Marcy [OH-9] - 2/16/2007
Rep McDermott, Jim [WA-7] - 2/16/2007
Rep Miller, George [CA-7] - 2/16/2007
Rep Matsui, Doris O. [CA-5] - 2/16/2007
Rep Berkley, Shelley [NV-1] - 2/16/2007
Rep Grijalva, Raul M. [AZ-7] - 2/16/2007
Rep Woolsey, Lynn C. [CA-6] - 2/16/2007
Rep McCollum, Betty [MN-4] - 2/16/2007
Rep Capuano, Michael E. [MA-8] - 3/7/2007
Rep McGovern, James P. [MA-3] - 3/19/2007
Rep Clay, Wm. Lacy [MO-1] - 3/19/2007
Rep Lofgren, Zoe [CA-16] - 4/20/2007
Rep Green, Gene [TX-29] - 4/23/2007
Rep Schakowsky, Janice D. [IL-9] - 4/25/2007
Rep Jackson, Jesse L., Jr. [IL-2] - 5/16/2007
Rep Frank, Barney [MA-4] - 9/24/2007     New
Rep Michaud, Michael [ME-2] - 10/15/2007     New
If your Senators or Representatives aren't listed, and you'd like to see more food inspections and more timely recalls, send them an email. (With elections a few weeks away, maybe they'll read their constituents' mail.)

If you haven't heard of the Safe Food Act 2007, I've written quite a few posts about it here.


The quote in the first sentence is from Senator Richard Durbin (Sponsor of the Safe Food Act), who on Wednesday sent a letter to the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), holding them to account for the recent spike in recalls and infections due to tainted food. He seemed especially ticked off about the Topps incident.

Man, was it a good letter:
"In the case of the Topps beef recall, it appears that an entire year’s worth of supply was contaminated, yet the USDA FSIS inspectors assigned to serve at that facility on a daily basis failed to detect the E. coli adulterant. In addition, once USDA FSIS became aware of cases of foodborne illnesses, it took more than 10 days for the agency to announce a recall."
The letter itemized 16 questions and requested a response from USDA FSIS in 20 days. Here was one question:
"Did USDA FSIS ever suggest to Topps that a recall wasn’t necessary? If so, why?"
Did I mention that the FDA doesn't even have recall authority? They never could mandate a recall of ConAgra's salmonella-tainted peanut butter. They could only ask ConAgra nicely.

Bill Marler's excellent food safety blog has the full letter. (Bill Marler is a Seattle attorney who specializes in food poisoning cases.)
Thanks to Food Law Prof Blog for the tip!

No comments: