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Senate hearing on food safety tomorrow; North Carolina plays role

By Taylor Blanchard Charlotte Sustainable Foods Examiner |

The U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) is holding a hearing on food safety tomorrow, Thursday, Oct. 22 at 10 a.m. EST. The HELP Committee will discuss the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, or S 510, which is the Senate’s version of food safety legislation. Earlier this year the U.S. House of Representatives passed HR 2749, or the Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009.

One of the food safety experts testifying during the hearing is Daniel L. Ragan of the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services, who will presumably discuss the effects of proposed food safety legislation on farmers. Earlier this month the FDA toured two North Carolina farms to hear feedback about the possible affects of proposed rules on small farmers.

North Carolina has additional ties to S 510. Richard Burr (R), is one of the bill’s co-sponsors, and both he and Kay Hagan (D) are members of the HELP Committee.

This is the first time a hearing has been held on S 510. The hearing is titled “Keeping America’s Families Safe: Reforming the Food Safety System” and you can watch the hearing live via streaming video.

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