There are several issues that the newly formed Food Policy Council is considering. The first is the problem of the apparent acceptance of the status quo on domestic hunger by policy makers and the public. The Mickey Leland Act, passed earlier in the year to improve the food stamp program, was dropped in the deficit reduction process. No other responses, except in the housing program, have been made to ease the hunger burden, which could get much worse in a recession. The second is food safety, where there has been inattention on the part of public interest groups in several areas, particularly microbial contamination of animal products. The incidence of food poisoning is epidemic, and even USDA scientists have asked out loud why the public hasn’t gotten more upset. USDA knows all the things that should be done to clean up poultry processing but is doing none of them. Instead, they “blame the victim” at every turn, and this summer released an advisory that the elderly, children, and anyone with reduced immunological competence should be very cautious in the consumption of poultry and eggs. Pressure has to be brought to change processing, and to adopt suggestions made by an NAS panel in 1985 to include microbiological testing in inspections.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health