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(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) applauded the passage of S.510, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act.  This legislation is the result of two years of bipartisan collaboration and passed the Senate today by a vote of 73-25.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 5,000 Americans die each year from food borne illness and a recent Georgetown study estimated that food borne illness costs the United States over $150 billion annually.

“This legislation is the first food safety legislation to pass in decades and will go a long way toward making sure that the U.S. continues to have the safest food supply in the world,” said Senator Patty Murray. “My grandparents ran a family farm in the Tri-Cities and I worked to make sure that this bill maintained the right balance between allowing small farmers to operate and the need for protections for families.”

The House of Representatives has passed a similar version of this bill. If this bill is signed into law it would mark the first major overhaul of food safety since 1940 when authority over food and drugs was moved from the USDA to the precursor of the FDA. 

FDA Food Safety Modernization Act:

  • Improves Capacity to Prevent Food Safety Problems
  • Requires Hazard Analysis and Risk-Based Preventative Controls
  • Improves Capacity to Detect and Respond to Food Safety Problems
  • Improves the Safety of Imported Food
  • Provides Authorization for Increased Food Safety Funding
  • Includes Whistleblower Protections

More information in S. 510 can be found here