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Agriculture and Food (11 - 20 of 1,559 items)
Imported Food Safety: FDA's Targeting Tool Has Enhanced Screening, but Further Improvements Are Possible
GAO-16-399: Published: May 26, 2016. Publicly Released: May 26, 2016.
The Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Predictive Risk-based Evaluation for Dynamic Import Compliance Targeting (PREDICT) tool uses a variety of data and analyzes data by applying rules—conditional statements that tell PREDICT how to react when encountering particular information—to generate risk scores for imported food. Many of the data used by PREDICT come from internal FDA sources, such...
Workplace Safety and Health: Additional Data Needed to Address Continued Hazards in the Meat and Poultry Industry
GAO-16-337: Published: Apr 25, 2016. Publicly Released: May 25, 2016.
Injury and illness rates in the meat and poultry slaughtering and processing industry declined from 2004 through 2013, similar to rates in all U.S. manufacturing, according to Department of Labor (DOL) data (see figure), yet hazardous conditions remain. The rates declined from an estimated 9.8 cases per 100 full-time workers in 2004 to 5.7 in 2013. However, these rates continued to be higher than...
Food Safety: FDA Coordinating with Stakeholders on New Rules but Challenges Remain and Greater Tribal Consultation Needed
GAO-16-425: Published: May 19, 2016. Publicly Released: May 19, 2016.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took numerous steps to ensure meaningful and timely input from nonfederal officials during development of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)-mandated rules on produce, human food, and animal food but did not fully meet its tribal consultation responsibilities. Among other things, FDA—an agency within the Department of Health and Human Services (HH...
Genetically Engineered Crops: USDA Needs to Enhance Oversight and Better Understand Impacts of Unintended Mixing with Other Crops
GAO-16-241: Published: Mar 15, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 14, 2016.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), have taken steps to regulate genetically-engineered (GE) crops (i.e., crops whose genetic makeup has been modified), but USDA has not updated its regulations to oversee GE crops derived from alternative technologies in which the GE crop developed contains no plant pest DNA. EPA...
USDA Administrative Services: Streamlining Efforts Ongoing, but Actions Needed to Monitor Progress, Identify Benefits, and Share Lessons Learned
GAO-16-168: Published: Mar 15, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 14, 2016.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) efforts to streamline and improve administrative services began in mid-2011 and have evolved since then. Initially, USDA launched a department-wide initiative to improve administrative services and selected 27 recommendations for implementation. USDA officials said 25 of the 27 had been implemented, and 2 were in progress, as of October 2015. For example...
Bee Health: USDA and EPA Should Take Additional Actions to Address Threats to Bee Populations
GAO-16-220: Published: Feb 10, 2016. Publicly Released: Mar 11, 2016.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) conducts monitoring, research and outreach, and conservation that help protect bees, but limitations in those efforts hamper the department's ability to protect bee health. For example, USDA has increased monitoring of honey bee colonies managed by beekeepers to better estimate losses nationwide but does not have a mechanism in place to coordinate the moni...
Emerging Animal Diseases: Actions Needed to Better Position USDA to Address Future Risks
GAO-16-132: Published: Dec 15, 2015. Publicly Released: Jan 14, 2016.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) did not take regulatory action during the initial response to the outbreaks of Swine Enteric Coronavirus Diseases (SECD) beginning in May 2013, when an outbreak was first detected, because the agency did not believe then that such action was necessary. Instead, USDA initially supported swine industry-led efforts. Without regulatory action, such as requirin...
Drug Compounding for Animals: FDA Could Improve Oversight with Better Information and Guidance [Reissued on January 8, 2016]
GAO-15-671: Published: Sep 28, 2015. Publicly Released: Sep 28, 2015.
Drugs compounded for animals offer certain medical benefits but also pose risks of causing harm or being ineffective. Specifically, drugs compounded for animals can serve as treatment options when no suitable drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is available. For example, no FDA-approved drugs exist to treat megacolon—a potentially lethal form of constipation—in cats, so vet...
School Nutrition: USDA Has Efforts Underway to Help Address Ongoing Challenges Implementing Changes in Nutrition Standards
GAO-15-656: Published: Sep 14, 2015. Publicly Released: Oct 14, 2015.
Nationwide, participation in the National School Lunch Program declined by 1.4 million children (or 4.5 percent) from school year 2010-2011 through school year 2013-2014, to 30.4 million children. The participation rate of enrolled students also declined, from 62 to 58 percent. Seven of eight states that GAO interviewed reported that challenges with student acceptance of changes made to comply wit...
International Food Assistance: Cargo Preference Increases Food Aid Shipping Costs, and Benefits Are Unclear
GAO-15-666: Published: Aug 26, 2015. Publicly Released: Sep 25, 2015.
Cargo preference for food aid (CPFA) requirements increased the overall cost of shipping food aid by an average of 23 percent, or $107 million, over what the cost would have been had CPFA requirements not been applied from April 2011 through fiscal year 2014. Moreover, differences in the implementation of CPFA requirements by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and U.S. Departmen...