Food Safety Working Group Release Findings

Food Safety Working Group Release Findings

Moves are being made to update food safety system.

Vice President Joe Biden joined Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius to announce the findings of the Food Safety Working Group that was formed earlier this year to look at the food safety system.

 

"Our goal is to overhaul the system so we can get better at both stopping food safety problems before they happen and almost as equally important moving quickly, much more quickly, when they do," Biden said. "We need to create a more comprehensive, more rational, more effective approach to food safety. This is, when you think about it, pretty long overdue."

 

The new food safety plan that was unveiled included the principles of preventing harm for consumers, having reliable data and analysis for food safety inspections and enforcement and identifying outbreaks quickly and bringing it to a halt.

 

Sebelius said that these are not just words on a page but rather are already being put into action. Sebelius and Vilsack also talked about a better trace-back system.

 

"In order to protect consumers and their families we are going to create a unified incident command system," Vilsack said. "And within 90 days Federal agencies will implement this new incident command system to address outbreaks of food borne illness."

 

They also said they will work to keep consumers in the loop and improve communications. An upgrade is planned to the Food Safety Web site at www.foodsafety.gov.

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