Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law

First Page



The United States food safety system is antiquated and failing. The laws that form the foundation of our food protection and govern the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) were enacted over 100 years ago. While some new powers were given to FDA with the Bioterrorism Act of 2002, funding has not kept pace. Safe Food International (SF), a coalition of consumer organizations from around the world, created a set of guidelines outlining an ideal national food safety program. The current system in the United States falls short of that goal. The outbreaks in 2006 and 2007 are simply the latest symptom of our outdated and failing food-safety system. We need to modernize our food laws and create a strong, science-based Food Safety Administration. The Safe Food Act of 2007, introduced by Senator Durbin and Representative DeLauro, requires the development of a single food-safety agency with the power to recall food, inspect foreign food plants, and work to prevent both intentional and unintentional contamination of the U.S. food supply.