Washington (CNN) – The Senate passed a food safety bill Tuesday to give more power to the Food and Drug Administration, more than a year after the House of Representatives passed a similar measure.
The bill, designed to bolster the safety of the nation's food supply, passed 73 to 25.
A version of the bill was passed by the House of Representatives in July of 2009 but had languished in the Senate, a fact that has angered some food safety advocates.
Non-profit advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest was one of the groups that released a report in September urging Senators to pass the stalled bill.
At that time, the group said there had been 85 recalls of FDA-regulated foods since the House of Representatives passed their version of the bill.
The recalls were associated with 1,850 reported illnesses, the report said.
The bill, called the Food Safety Enhancement Act (S. 510), covers many aspects of food safety, including better preventive control measures by manufacturers, more frequent inspections of facilities, and greater FDA authority over recalls.
The bill is supposed to help the government and food manufacturers handle situations like recent recalls on lettuce, peanuts and eggs.
In the egg incident over the summer, more than 500 million eggs were recalled because of a salmonella outbreak.
The bill will allow the FDA to order direct recalls of suspected eggs instead of relying on voluntary recalls by the manufacturers.
The Senate voted Monday to end debate on the food safety bill, clearing the way for the vote on Tuesday.