November 30th, 2010
10:37 AM ET
12 years ago

Senate approves long-delayed food safety bill

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.

Filed under: Senate
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Name Lynnitron

    The 25 who voted against this bill should be ashamed. Love when special interests trump public health and safety. Do these idiots not have children or loved ones?

    November 30, 2010 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  2. Dave

    This is absolutely terrible news. Has nothing much to do with safety but to expand control over your lives, as usual. This mentions nothing about control over whether you can grow your own garden on your own without government controls over it. Yes, you read that right! That's in the bill.

    November 30, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  3. Lynda/Minnesota

    Will wonders never cease ... DeMint finally allowed a bill through? How benevolent of him.

    November 30, 2010 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  4. gary

    The 25 senators who voted NO should have to answer to the american public why they do not approve of food safety. They should also give direct answers, instead of the normal double talk, that means nothing to the public.

    November 30, 2010 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  5. steven harnack

    I want to know who the 25 Senators who voted against this bill are and what their motivation was.

    November 30, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  6. Bill

    So what is more important? The food bll or the tax cuts? If people don't have any money to spend on food why bother with the bill??? Our seniors are already facing this problem..... This government can't continue spending like a drunken sailor just in from a 6 month deployment....

    November 30, 2010 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  7. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    The FDA should have the power to recall things that are dangerous or diseased for the public's health. There is no reason why they can't order the recall. If the government doesn't do what it can to protect the public, what good is it? This is vital.

    November 30, 2010 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |