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Agriculture and Food (91 - 100 of 1,559 items)
Food Safety: Preslaughter Interventions Could Reduce E. coli in Cattle
GAO-12-257: Published: Mar 9, 2012. Publicly Released: Mar 9, 2012.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and university researchers identified several treatments administered before cattle are slaughtered, or preslaughter interventions, that could reduce Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) in cattle. Such preslaughter interventions include bacteriophages (viruses that infect and kill bacteria), probiotics (live bacteria that can benefit the digestive sy...
Food and Drug Administration: Better Coordination Could Enhance Efforts to Address Economic Adulteration and Protect the Public Health
GAO-12-46: Published: Oct 24, 2011. Publicly Released: Nov 23, 2011.
In recent years, the United States experienced public health crises suspected to have been caused by the deliberate substitution or addition of harmful ingredients in food and drugs--specifically melamine in pet food and oversulfated chondroitin sulfate in the blood thinner heparin. These ingredients were evidently added to increase the apparent value of these products or reduce their production c...
Food Safety: FDA Needs to Reassess Its Approach to Reducing an Illness Caused by Eating Raw Oysters
GAO-11-607: Published: Sep 8, 2011. Publicly Released: Oct 11, 2011.
Vibrio vulnificus (V. vulnificus) is a bacterium that occurs naturally in the Gulf of Mexico. On average, since 2000, about 32 individuals a year in the United States have become ill from eating raw or undercooked oysters containing V. vulnificus, and about half have died. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for ensuring oyster safety and works with the Interstate Shellfish Sanit...
United Nations: Improved Reporting and Member States' Consensus Needed for Food and Agriculture Organization's Reform Plan
GAO-11-922: Published: Sep 28, 2011. Publicly Released: Sep 28, 2011.
The United States and other member states have long-standing concerns about the management and operations of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), a United Nations (UN) specialized agency charged with leading international efforts to defeat hunger. After an external evaluation found that FAO needed to reform, FAO adopted its reform plan, called the Immediate Plan of Action for FAO Renewal (...
Antibiotic Resistance: Agencies Have Made Limited Progress Addressing Antibiotic Use in Animals
GAO-11-801: Published: Sep 7, 2011. Publicly Released: Sep 14, 2011.
Antibiotics have saved millions of lives, but antibiotic use in food animals contributes to the emergence of resistant bacteria that may affect humans. The Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Agriculture (USDA) are primarily responsible for ensuring food safety. GAO reviewed the issue in 2004 and recommended improved data collection and risk assessment. GAO was asked to examine the...
Homeland Security: Challenges for the Food and Agriculture Sector in Responding to Potential Terrorist Attacks and Natural Disasters
GAO-11-946T: Published: Sep 13, 2011. Publicly Released: Sep 13, 2011.
This testimony examines issues related to food and agriculture emergencies. Agriculture is critical to public health and the nation's economy. It annually produces $300 billion worth of food and other farm products and is estimated to be responsible for 1 out of every 12 U.S. jobs. As a result, any natural or deliberate disruption of the agriculture or food production systems--including natural di...
Homeland Security: Actions Needed to Improve Response to Potential Terrorist Attacks and Natural Disasters Affecting Food and Agriculture
GAO-11-652: Published: Aug 19, 2011. Publicly Released: Sep 12, 2011.
The President issued Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD) -9 in 2004 to establish a national policy to defend the food and agriculture systems against terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other emergencies. HSPD-9 assigns various emergency response and recovery responsibilities to the Departments of Agriculture (USDA), Health and Human Services (HHS), Homeland Security (DHS), and oth...
USDA Systems Modernization: Management and Oversight Improvements Are Needed
GAO-11-586: Published: Jul 20, 2011. Publicly Released: Jul 20, 2011.
The United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) is responsible for administering billions of dollars annually in program benefits to farmers and ranchers. Since 2004, FSA has been planning to modernize its information technology (IT) systems that process these benefits with the Modernize and Innovate the Delivery of Agricultural Systems (MIDAS) program. GAO was asked...
International Food Assistance: Funding Development Projects through the Purchase, Shipment, and Sale of U.S. Commodities Is Inefficient and Can Cause Adverse Market Impacts
GAO-11-636: Published: Jun 23, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2011.
Since the Food Security Act of 1985, Congress has authorized monetization--the sale of U.S. food aid commodities in developing countries to fund development. In fiscal year 2010, more than $300 million was used to procure and ship 540,000 metric tons of commodities to be monetized by the U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Through analysis of agency da...
U.S. Department of Agriculture: More Effective Management and Performance Can Help Implementation of the Farm Bill
GAO-11-779T: Published: Jun 23, 2011. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2011.
The current fiscal environment, ongoing deliberations for the next Farm Bill, and the public's expectations for a high-performing and efficient government underscore the need for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to focus on program results and customer needs, work across organizational lines to help minimize any overlap and duplication, and build its internal capacity. USDA comprises 15 a...