Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Polls, Reports Highlight The Need To Update The US Food Safety System

Date:
November 17, 2009
Source:
Pew Health Group
Summary:
The US Senate currently has an historic opportunity to take a major step toward improving food safety for all Americans. That is why a coalition of public health professionals, consumer organizations and groups representing victims of food-borne illness is sending the message that it is time to "make our food safe for the holidays."

The U. S. Senate currently has an historic opportunity to take a major step toward improving food safety for all Americans. That is why a coalition of public health professionals, consumer organizations and groups representing victims of foodborne illness is sending the message that it is time to "Make Our Food Safe."

Every year, millions of Americans are sickened from consuming contaminated food, hundreds of thousands are hospitalized and thousands die. Multiple outbreaks of foodborne illness over the last several years -- from spinach to peppers to peanut butter products -- have demonstrated that these outbreaks are not random, unpreventable occurrences, but are due to widespread problems with food safety oversight in the United States.

This summer the U.S. House of Representatives passed its version of a sweeping food safety bill, which includes increased inspections of domestic food facilities and greater oversight of imports. The Make Our Food Safe coalition believes the Senate can take a major step forward in protecting public health by passing legislation that gives the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) enhanced authority to oversee the safety of the nation's food supply by the end of this year.

New polls of voters in selected states -- Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina and Ohio -- show overwhelming support for measures that would give the FDA these new powers. The polls, which were conducted in October by a respected bipartisan team of pollsters at Hart Research (Democratic) and Public Opinion Strategies (Republican), were commissioned by coalition member the Pew Health Group.

"Families across America want the government to do more to ensure their loved ones do not get sick from the food they serve over the holidays," says Sandra Eskin, director of the food safety project for the Pew Health Group. "Congress should enact stronger food safety laws before the end of the year."

Foodborne illness can significantly impact the health of children. According to a new fact sheet released today by the Make Our Food Safe coalition, approximately half of the reported foodborne illnesses occur in children, with the majority of these cases occurring in those under 15 years of age. Data from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) for five major foodborne pathogens -- -Salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes, Campylobacter, Shigella, E. coli 0157:H7 -- clearly show the burden that children are carrying with regard to foodborne disease. The fact sheet also details the health risks associated with Toxoplasma gondii, a common parasite.

In addition, coalition member Center for Foodborne Illness Research & Prevention (CFI) is releasing a report that looks in detail at the long-term impacts of foodborne pathogens. CFI's report, The Long-Term Health Outcomes of Selected Foodborne Pathogens, provides expert descriptions about some of the serious long-term health outcomes ranging from hypertension and diabetes to kidney failure and mental retardation. The report also calls for a new approach to foodborne illness research and surveillance.

"Systematic follow-up of foodborne illness cases will greatly enhance our ability to attribute long-term health problems to acute foodborne illnesses," says Tanya Roberts, Ph.D., an author of the report. "Population-based studies, improved public health surveillance and increased data sharing will improve our knowledge about the sources, trends and health outcomes associated with foodborne disease. Taking this approach will require dedicated funding, but such an investment is necessary to prevent costly economic, health and personal losses."

"The polling and reports released today should show our lawmakers that they need to send food safety legislation to the president's desk as soon as possible," says Elizabeth Armstrong of Fishers, IN, whose young daughter Ashley became seriously ill in 2006 after eating contaminated spinach. "The new legislation may not help my family, but it could save lives and spare others from suffering what we have endured. I want the senators to think about that and heed the coalition's message: Make Our Food Safe for the Holidays!"

Poll results, fact sheets and further information is available at www.MakeOurFoodSafe.org.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Pew Health Group. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Pew Health Group. "New Polls, Reports Highlight The Need To Update The US Food Safety System." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 November 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091112113419.htm>.
Pew Health Group. (2009, November 17). New Polls, Reports Highlight The Need To Update The US Food Safety System. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091112113419.htm
Pew Health Group. "New Polls, Reports Highlight The Need To Update The US Food Safety System." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091112113419.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) President Barack Obama gave a briefing Thursday announcing 8 million people have signed up under the Affordable Care Act. He blasted continued Republican efforts to repeal the law. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins