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Agriculture and Food (141 - 150 of 1,559 items)
Dietary Supplements: FDA Should Take Further Actions to Improve Oversight and Consumer Understanding
GAO-09-250: Published: Jan 29, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 2, 2009.
Dietary supplements and foods with added dietary ingredients, such as vitamins and herbs, constitute multibillion dollar industries. Past reports on the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) regulation of these products raised concerns about product safety and the availability of reliable information. Since then, FDA published draft guidance on requirements for reporting adverse events--which are h...
Veterinarian Workforce: The Federal Government Lacks a Comprehensive Understanding of Its Capacity to Protect Animal and Public Health
GAO-09-424T: Published: Feb 26, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 26, 2009.
Veterinarians play an essential role in the defense against animal diseases, some of which can have serious repercussions for the health of animals, humans, and the economy. More than half of the federal veterinarians work in the Departments of Agriculture (USDA) and Health and Human Services (HHS). However, there is a growing national shortage of veterinarians. This testimony focuses primarily on...
Veterinarian Workforce: Actions Are Needed to Ensure Sufficient Capacity for Protecting Public and Animal Health
GAO-09-178: Published: Feb 4, 2009. Publicly Released: Feb 18, 2009.
Veterinarians are essential for controlling zoonotic diseases--which spread between animals and humans--such as avian influenza. Most federal veterinarians work in the Departments of Agriculture (USDA), Defense (DOD), and Health and Human Services (HHS). However, there is a growing national shortage of veterinarians. GAO determined the extent to which (1) the federal government has assessed the su...
Meal Counting and Claiming by Food Service Management Companies in the School Meal Programs
GAO-09-156R: Published: Jan 30, 2009. Publicly Released: Jan 30, 2009.
The federal government spends about $10 billion each year to provide meals to over 30 million students through the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs. However, a 2007 study estimated that of this amount, $860 million (8.6 percent) in school year 2005-2006 was paid improperly because of errors in the number of meals counted and claimed for reimbursement. These programs are administered by...
Genetically Engineered Crops: Agencies Are Proposing Changes to Improve Oversight, but Could Take Additional Steps to Enhance Coordination and Monitoring
GAO-09-60: Published: Nov 5, 2008. Publicly Released: Dec 5, 2008.
Genetically engineered (GE) crops--including crops engineered to resist pests or tolerate herbicides--are widespread in the United States and around the world. Taking direction from the 1986 Coordinated Framework for Regulation of Biotechnology, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulate GE crops to ensure that...
Federal Farm Programs: USDA Needs to Strengthen Controls to Prevent Payments to Individuals Who Exceed Income Eligibility Limits
GAO-09-67: Published: Oct 24, 2008. Publicly Released: Nov 24, 2008.
Farmers receive about $16 billion annually in federal farm program payments. These payments go to about 2 million recipients, both individuals and entities. GAO previously has reported that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) did not consistently ensure that these payments went only to those who meet eligibility requirements. GAO was asked to evaluate (1) how effectively USDA implemented 200...
U.S. Department of Agriculture: Recommendations and Options to Address Management Deficiencies in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
GAO-09-62: Published: Oct 22, 2008. Publicly Released: Oct 22, 2008.
For decades, numerous federal reports have described serious weaknesses in USDA's civil rights programs--in particular, in resolving discrimination complaints and providing minority farmers with access to programs. In 2002, Congress authorized the position of Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) at USDA to provide leadership for resolving these long-standing problems. GAO was asked to asses...
Food Labeling: FDA Needs to Better Leverage Resources, Improve Oversight, and Effectively Use Available Data to Help Consumers Select Healthy Foods
GAO-08-597: Published: Sep 9, 2008. Publicly Released: Oct 9, 2008.
Two thirds of U.S. adults are overweight, and childhood obesity and diabetes are on the rise. To reverse these health problems, experts are urging Americans to eat healthier. Food labels contain information to help consumers who want to make healthy food choices. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversees federal labeling rules for 80 percent of foods. GAO was asked to examine (1) FDA's effor...
Food Safety: Improvements Needed in FDA Oversight of Fresh Produce
GAO-08-1047: Published: Sep 26, 2008. Publicly Released: Sep 26, 2008.
In recent years, both domestic and imported produce have been linked to reported outbreaks of foodborne illness. Contamination in produce is of particular concern because produce is often consumed raw. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has primary responsibility for ensuring the safety of both domestic and imported fresh produce. GAO was asked to examine (1) the resources FDA has spent on fre...
Food Stamp Program: Options for Delivering Financial Incentives to Participants for Purchasing Targeted Foods
GAO-08-415: Published: Jul 30, 2008. Publicly Released: Jul 30, 2008.
In fiscal year 2007, the Food Stamp Program provided about $30.4 billion in nutrition assistance benefits to 26.5 million individuals. Benefits are issued through Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards, similar to debit cards, to purchase eligible foods at authorized retail stores. The diets of many low-income individuals, like the U.S. population overall, do not meet federal dietary guidelines....