Trump Stands Tough On Food Safety

Trump Stands Tough On Food Safety

(Headline Health) President Trump’s calls for repealing Obamacare and reforming food stamps (SNAP) – not to mention his personal taste for fast food and diet soda – show that he it totally indifferent to the health and nutrition of Americans.

So goes the oft-repeated mantra of his critics in Congress and much of the news media.

But a close look at his newly minted budget proposal – which is loaded with large cuts to bloated federal agencies – shows his strong commitment to the food safety programs every American relies on. Details below from Food Safety News …

Trump budget takes nothing away from food safety programs

(Dan Flynn, Food Safety News) In the fiscal year 2019 budget that sets out to cut domestic programs by almost $700 billion over 10 years, federal food safety has not only escaped the knife but made some small gains.

President Donald J. Trump’s $1.1 trillion discretionary budget proposal adds $9.4 billion to the Department of Health and Human Services, the government’s largest domestic agency and home to the Food and Drug Administration, while trimming $3.5 billion from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The USDA cuts, however, do not impact food safety.

“The (USDA) budget fully funds the costs necessary to support about 8,100 personnel located at more than 6,400 processing and slaughter establishments for meat, poultry and egg production in the United States,” says the document prepared by the Executive Office of Management and Budget (OBM).

“These personnel act as front-line inspectors and investigators; they provide surveillance to protect the nation’s food supply and further the mission of the Food Safety and Inspection Service.”

The Food Safety and Inspection Service, an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture, is the agency responsible for ensuring that United States’ commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products is safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged.

The proposed budget for the period Oct. 1, 2018, to Sept. 30, 2019, is subject to review and amendment by Congress before it takes effect.

The Alliance for a Stronger FDA, which represents about 150 patient and consumer groups, biomedical research advocates, health professional groups, and individuals, praised the Trump FDA budget proposal and credited the leadership of FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb for the gains.

FDA’s budget authority would increase by $473 million in the Trump budget. Food safety gets a small slice of that.

“The funding of food safety programs needs a boost given then FDA’s multi-year responsibility for implementing the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and the continuing challenges in this area, “ said Thomas Gremillion, director of the Food Policy Institute at the Consumer Federation of America who is an Alliance, board member. Read the full story at Food Safety News.