Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Consumers Union says "not in my food"

Consumers Union, the publisher of Consumer Reports, has started a new food safety website: The site provides text boxes for writing a letter to USDA. In case you have writer's block, the boxes provide draft language for your own vociferous complaint:
I am writing to express my concern about the safety of the USDA's recall system as it relates to meat. The USDA should have mandatory recall authority on tainted meat so that the public health is not compromised by producers or processors who do not voluntarily come forth when their meat is contaminated with E. coli, listeria, or mad cow disease. Furthermore, I am shocked that the USDA keeps secret the names of retailers that are selling recalled meat. That seems almost criminal. I am appalled that the USDA, an agency charged with protecting the safety of the food supply, has entered into secrecy agreements with a reported twelve states regarding recalled meat.
The language is sufficiently fierce that I will provide a follow-up post with the case in favor of the current policy, if anybody can make it. Write me. The new website also has a nice newsroom with national press on food safety policy.

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