Food safety bill passes Senate
November 30, 2010
The U.S. Senate passed a food-safety bill on Tuesday, but the legislation must still pass the House in what is likely to be a straight up-or-down vote. The new measure, prompted by high-profile recalls of foods including peanut butter, spinach and eggs, expands the Food and Drug Administration’s authority to initiate recalls. It would also allow the FDA to increase inspections of both domestic food processing and food imports. Producers of all foods would have to engage in the type of planning and record-keeping now required of meat processing plants. The measure passed the Senate 73 to 25, but Congress will probably not follow the usual procedure of reconciling the bill with a House version that passed last year, due to time constraints. Instead, the House will likely vote on the Senate version before the end of the year. A bid by one senator to include a ban on the controversial plastics additive bisphenol-A was rejected.