New Investigation Sheds Light On FDA

( The results of a months-long study of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) oversight of our nation’s food supply were released last week by Politico. What were the results? The FDA fails to satisfy American consumers’ food safety and nutrition expectations.
Interviews with dozens of current and former senior FDA officials, industry representatives, members of Congress, and trade groups—all of whom are familiar with the FDA’s inner workings—are part of the Politico investigation. The study focuses primarily on food safety, nutrition, and structural issues within the agency. Those who spoke with Politico described the agency’s food supply regulations as a joke. According to the article, even many supporters of the agency are now questioning whether the agency is making the most effective use of its nearly $1 billion budget. Despite greater funding, the number of food safety inspections completed each year has been diminishing.
The investigative article touches on the FDA’s incompetent and haphazard reaction to a foodborne disease that spread through several states last year, caused by contaminated spinach.
More than 11 years have gone by since Congress passed a comprehensive food safety law called the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). It is aimed at preventing this sort of health hazard. But over the last decade, Congress has increased FDA funding, yet fatal outbreaks continue to occur, and the agency always takes too long to respond.
Since the implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the number of cases of foodborne diseases has not decreased.
Even if FSMA had been administered without issues, it was doomed to be a costly plan that failed to enhance food safety results because the FDA’s own best-case analysis revealed that FSMA’s maximum impact on foodborne diseases would be modest at most.
Everyone agrees that the FDA is failing to meet its responsibilities, but there is still disagreement over how to address the issue. The main problem isn’t that the FDA isn’t fulfilling consumer expectations or doing enough, as the report reveals. The problem is politicians, bureaucrats, and activists who have persuaded Americans that increasing FDA budgets and enacting stronger food laws will solve the problem. In reality, the FDA’s size should be reduced, its budget should be cut, and its scope should be limited.