Food Engineering

REGULATORY WATCH

September 1, 2006
National Uniformity debate goes on Consumer advocates and a recently retired FDA official lined up against the proposed National Uniformity for Food Act at a late July Congressional hearing. The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions heard from former FDA employee William Hubbard, who praised the current federal-state partnership that he said effectively monitors the safety of the nation's food supply.

National Uniformity debate goes on Consumer advocates and a recently retired FDA official lined up against the proposed National Uniformity for Food Act at a late July Congressional hearing. The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions heard from former FDA employee William Hubbard, who praised the current federal-state partnership that he said effectively monitors the safety of the nation's food supply. Various state attorney generals argued the bill would prevent them from protecting consumers in their states. But the food industry voiced strong support for giving the federal government full authority to regulate food safety. Cal Dooley, president and CEO of the Food Products Association, says he's heard these arguments before.

"More than a decade ago, the Food and Drug Administration established national nutrition labeling requirements, which preempt differing requirements by states. As a result, consumers in all 50 states can review nutrition information about food products and the ingredients a product contains," Dooley said.

The measure, which would standardize warning labels and food safety requirements in all states, is now due for Senate consideration.