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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

Reading amended and passed H.R. 2749 Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009 this weekend – How much fun is that?

Here is the link to the bill that has passed. 

When introduced in early June, the Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009, which would amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act was summarized. It required each food facility to: (1) conduct a hazard analysis; (2) implement preventive controls; and (3) implement a food safety plan.

Required the Secretary of Health and Human Services to: (1) issue science-based performance standards to minimize the hazards from foodborne contaminants; (2) establish science-based standards for raw agricultural commodities; (3) inspect facilities at a frequency determined pursuant to a risk-based schedule; (4) establish a food tracing system; (5) assess fees relating to food facility reinspection and food recall; and (6) establish a program for accreditation of laboratories that perform analytical testing of food for import or export.

Authorized the Secretary to: (1) order an immediate cessation of distribution, or a recall, of food; (2) establish an importer verification program; and (3) quarantine food in any geographic area within the United States.

Defined the term "color additive" to include carbon monoxide that may affect the color of fresh meat, poultry products, or seafood.

Required country of origin labeling on food and annual registration of importers.

Provided for unique identifiers for food facilities and food importers.

Deemed a food to be adulterated if an inspection is delayed or refused.

Required the Secretary to establish a corps of inspectors dedicated to inspections of foreign food facilities.

Set forth provisions governing the reorganization of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) field laboratories and district offices.

Gave the Commissioner of Food and Drugs subpoena authority with respect to a food proceeding.

Established whistleblower protections.

I am going to work my way through the bill this weekend and report back on what finally passed.