Federal Issue Brief

 S. 1157, Foodborne Illness Reduction Act of 2011

AVMA Position:

Nonsupport

Summary:

S. 1157 would require (1) the Secretary of Agriculture to provide retail establishments with information describing recalled meat, poultry, eggs, and related food products, (2) the retail establishment to communicate the recall information to consumers, and (3) the Food Safety Inspection Service of the Department of Agriculture to protect against certain foodborne illnesses. 

Key Points in Opposition:

The AVMA recognizes the importance of and hazards associated with Salmonella, Toxoplasma, enterohemorrhagic Shiga toxin producing serotypes of E. coli (EHEC), and other microorganisms, yet believe that the United States Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has the appropriate regulatory oversight and mechanisms in place to minimize and control these hazards without further legislative action.
 

The AVMA finds several provisions within the legislation potentially valuable, such as improvement of testing facilities and proficiency of testing services, yet still expresses concerns that some items within the legislation are overly prescriptive and duplicative, such as specifically dictating the regulatory process when comparable programs are in place to address these food safety concerns.

Current Status:

S. 1157 was introduced by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (NY) on June 8, 2011, and referred to Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry. 

AVMA Contact:

Dr. Ashley S. Morgan, Assistant Director, Governmental Relations Division, 202-289-3210.