Stories Below come from our Media Partner 3BL Media - Click their logo or any of the stories for more information
Focus on Food Safety
Updated January 2011 -
The year 2010 saw incidents of food-borne illness from common foods such as eggs, spinach, tomatoes, ground beef, peanut butter, candy, pet food, and cookie dough The nearly weekly investigations and recalls of various foods items from the USA and abroad created ever- mounting pressure on the US Congress to take action and revise the nation’s food safety laws.
In December 2010, the first major overhaul of the food-safety system since the1930s was adopted by the Congress and then signed into law by President Barack Obama in early January 2011. The law calls for increasing government inspections at food-processing facilities and, for the first time, gives the Food and Drug Administration the power to order the recall of unsafe foods.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that each year 1 out of 6 Americans get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die from food borne diseases. 12/2010
With increased regulation opposed by many family-owned and organic farmers, the legislation still needs to be funded and with the change in the control of the US House of Representatives funding might be a huge problem. The law does set standards and now shifts the focus to other countries that export food stuffs into the United States. A January poll of consumers in China indicated that more than 70% did not have confidence in the safety of their [nation’s] food supply. China is a large supplier of food to North America. It remains to be seen if food exporting countries will raise the bar on food safety in the future as a result of the US’s action.
Food Safety will continue to be a focus of interest of corporations, Congress and the public and AC subscribers will be able to read about it all here under the Hot Topic of Food Safety.
Food…trust – and provider accountability -- the three terms clearly go together. We consume food hundreds, even thousands of miles from its origination. Trust is everything! Anything we put in our bodies every day should be “trustworthy,” in terms of where it came from -- and everyone involved in the food supply chain should be accountable for their actions (or inaction in certain cases). From grower / farmer / planter / rancher to food processor to retailer or food service or restaurant…and then to each of us – there is a clear chain of accountability. Trust is the important foundation all along the human food chain – preserving trust should be an imperative for every player. And yet, accidents do happen. Each year in the United States tainted foods cause an estimated 75 million illnesses resulting in more than 300,000 hospitalizations and as many as 5,000 deaths or more. (World-wide food hazards kill more than 1.8 million people each year, mostly affecting children.)
The impact on the U.S. economy in medical costs alone top $6.5 billion with maybe two or three times that number in financial losses to business, industry and government. More and more of the food items that we in the U.S.A. consume come to our shores from foreign and third world production and processing sources, where there can be a lack of adequate sanitation or proper food handling procedures and oversight.
Even here in America, numerous food processing issues arise each year, typically involving incidents of food-borne illnesses originating from such biological hazards as Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria, and these and more continue to be significant public health threats. Those at greatest risk are children, senior citizens, pregnant women and their unborn children, and those with impacted immune systems.
There is heightened interest in food safety issues on the part of consumers and their advocates; government officials at the federal, state and local levels; the healthcare community; media; and food, retailing and restaurant industries. The nation has made great progress in identifying harmful food production technologies, ramping up safety procedures, and adopting rules and regulations and to promote safer methods of handling and preparing foods.
Food Safety is all about Accountability – and trust. The AC Hot Topic – Food Safety section is designed to present timely and useful news and information, a range of commentary, and reports on research on food safety topics. The objective: To improve and expand the public dialogue and contribute to the goal of safer food sources, processing and monitoring for all citizens. As always, we are interested in your comments on this important topic.
Latest on Focus on Food Safety
December 10, 2019 China steps up US soybean purchases as trade talks drag onSource: CNBC
Based on analysis of Chinese and U.S. data, Chinese imports of American soybeans between September and November this year increased 13 times from the same period last year, according to Xiaoping Zhang, Greater China Regional...
December 9, 2019 S&D Coffee & Tea reveals sustainability commitment in new reportSource: Global Coffee Report
S&D Coffee & Tea has released its 2019 sustainability report, Rooted in Impact, summarising efforts and progress the company made throughout 2017 and 2018.
December 9, 2019 Way too many people can't afford a sustainable dietSource: Inverse
Food is a huge part of global warming, and eating more sustainably could make a big difference in cutting the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change.
December 6, 2019 Whole Foods Market talks sustainability: 'I think consumers are interested more than ever about where their food comes from'Source: Food Navigator
he grocery retail landscape is hyper competitive with conventional and discount retailers stocking organic and natural options, yet Whole Foods Market continues to push the envelope in terms of product quality, particularly in...
November 29, 2019 A new world map rates food sustainability for countries across the globeSource: Science Daily
A global food system sustainability study builds the first map of its kind to score the sustainability of food systems, country-by-country. The study goes beyond usual questions of productivity and nutrition, and includes...
November 29, 2019 Filling the sustainability knowledge gapSource: Food Business News
BELLEVUE, WASH. — Americans are showing more interest in sustainability issues, and food and beverage companies could do a better job of promoting the specific attributes of their products, according to a 2019 survey from The...
November 29, 2019 'Sustainable' is a trendy word in the food industry — but farmers aren't getting enough credit for itSource: CBC
Reports published in the last several years suggest North American consumers are willing to pay more for products labelled as sustainably sourced or produced.
November 21, 2019 Tetra Pak first to offer certified sustainable sugarcane packagingSource: Food Bev Media
Tetra Pak, in collaboration with its supplier Braskem, has claimed it has become the first company in the food and beverage industry to offer packaging made with responsibly sourced plant-based polymers, in line with Bonsucro...
November 15, 2019 Sustainability campaign launched by Welsh meat industrySource: Global Meat News
A £250,000 marketing and communications campaign to promote the positive environmental story behind the production of Welsh Lamb and Welsh Beef was launched by Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC).
November 14, 2019 Sustainable solutions offer big challenges to food processorsSource: Food Engineering
But sustainability isn’t going away because corporate sustainability goals, cost pressures and demands for details about sustainable production and ingredients from consumers are all here to stay.
|HOME | ABOUT THE SITE | SUBSCRIBE TO SUSTAINABILITY HIGHLIGHTS NEWSLETTER | VOICES: FEATURED COMMENTATORS AND BLOGGERS | SPECIAL SECTIONS|