WESTON A. PRICE FOUNDATION
March 2, 2006
GOOD WORK ON HR 4167 ON FOOD SAFETY; VOTE DELAYED!
CONGRESS WILL ALLOW FOR DEBATE NEXT WEEK!
Just received good news – your emails to Congress are working. Thank you for taking action this week to stop H.R. 4167. You have already made a big difference.
Congress was about to pass a bill this morning to gut food safety laws across the country–without even holding a hearing on the bill! The good news: the House decided to delay the vote until next week, and they’ve actually scheduled time for debate on the issue!
Our representatives are finally listening–and now we need to keep the pressure on. H.R. 4167, the “National Uniformity for Food Act,” lowers the bar on food safety by overturning state food safety laws that are not “identical” to federal law. The bill could directly harm consumers by increasing their exposure to food-borne illnesses, undermining the authority of state food safety officers, and overturning state food labeling laws. We need to stop this bill!
Industry supporters of this bill claim that they are “standardizing” food safety regulations – but don’t be fooled. What this bill really does is lowers all state food safety regulations to the lowest federal standard. Local and state officials are now responsible for 80% of the nation’s food safety enforcement, and this bill would restrict the ability of local officials to protect you and your family as best they can.
We need stronger protections for our nation’s food supplies, not weaker ones. We now know that Congress is listening to us – and your emails work. If you have not done so, please voice your NO to HR 4167.
To send a letter by e-mail to your U.S. Representative, please go to http://ga3.org/campaign/fooduniformity_national_march.
Time is of essence!
Some of you have asked just how does this bill affect the availability of raw milk. Here is a letter from Brian Synder, executive director of the Pennsylvania Association of Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) on this issue: “…This particular bill is suspect for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that it apparently has come to a vote without hearings and with very little public notice or scrutiny. Also, it is designed as a way to “preempt” efforts by individual states that might impose labeling requirements or packaging procedures that exceed FDA standards . . . in other words, it would prevent states from going beyond the FDA in terms of requiring that certain ingredients, processes or warnings are identified on the package. As such, it is a heavy-handed way for the food processing industry to insure the uniformity of the regulation it faces (and sluggishness of any attempts to raise the bar).
Some of the concern about this bill is that it might have a negative impact on the growing raw milk industry in Pennsylvania and elsewhere. For this to happen, it would mean that individual states would be expected to bring their regulation “up” to the standards of FDA, which is the opposite effect. I have not as yet been able to confirm one way or another on this, but have read one document reporting that H.R. 4167 would apply only to food intended for “interstate commerce,” which means raw milk marketing would not change (i.e. it’s already illegal to sell raw milk across state lines)…. ”
As more information becomes available, we will forward that onto you.
Thank you for your great work!