E. coli-contaminated sprouts from Germany are responsible for 48 recent deaths and thousands of serious illnesses worldwide, and last summer about a half billion eggs were recalled because of Salmonella that made nearly 2,000 Americans sick. These outbreaks show we need to safeguard the American food supply by improving oversight within the U.S., as well as outside our borders.
Earlier in 2011, Congress passed the Food Safety Modernization Act to improve food safety and protect the American people from foodborne illness. However, without enough funding the public will never see the safeguards Congress intended. The U.S. House of Representatives voted last month to slash the FDA and U.S. Department of Agriculture’s food safety budgets for next year. These cuts put all Americans at risk, but children, seniors, pregnant women or other individuals with compromised immune systems will carry the greatest risk.
The U.S. Senate will consider funding levels for the FDA and USDA soon. Tell your Senators to help restore the FDA’s food safety funds and protect Americans from hazards in their food.
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