FDA Proposes Sweeping Food-Safety Reforms
The US Food and Drug Administration has finally unveiled proposed new food-safety regulations aimed at reducing the estimated 3,000 deaths annually from foodborne illnesses. The rules would require farmers to insure workers’ hands and irriga-tion water are clean and that animals are kept out of fields. Food manufacturers would have to submit food-safety plans to the FDA. The agency says the changes would help avoid outbreaks like those recently affecting peanut butter, mangoes and cantaloupe, and could prevent almost 2 million illnesses a year. The new rules come two years after Congress passed upgraded food-safety leg-islation; it could take as long as three more years, however, for the regulations to be finalized and farms to be in full compliance.