Food industry (1 - 10 of 106 items)
School Lunch: Modifications Needed to Some of the New Nutrition Standards
GAO-13-708T: Published: Jun 27, 2013. Publicly Released: Jun 27, 2013.
School districts faced several challenges implementing the new lunch requirements in school year 2012-2013, according to the eight districts GAO visited and food service and industry officials GAO interviewed from across the country; and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) response to some of these challenges has been limited. For example, because USDA regulations restrict the amounts of m...
Food Safety: FDA Can Better Oversee Food Imports by Assessing and Leveraging Other Countries' Oversight Resources
GAO-12-933: Published: Sep 28, 2012. Publicly Released: Oct 31, 2012.
We identified five major actions the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is to complete under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) to establish a reliable system that uses third-party audits conducted by foreign governments or other third parties to help ensure food safety. FDA officials and others report that each of these actions presents challenges that must be addressed. First, FDA is t...
Food Safety: FDA's Food Advisory and Recall Process Needs Strengthening
GAO-12-589: Published: Jul 26, 2012. Publicly Released: Jul 26, 2012.
Several government entities, including federal agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and some states such as Texas, have the authority to order product recalls. Generally, FDA is to follow the same process for implementing its food recall authority as other federal agencies use to order recalls of other products, including (1) determini...
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...
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...
Food Labeling: FDA Needs to Reassess Its Approach to Protecting Consumers from False or Misleading Claims
GAO-11-102: Published: Jan 14, 2011. Publicly Released: Jan 14, 2011.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversees federal requirements to prohibit false or misleading food labels; the Federal Trade Commission enforces the prohibition against false or misleading advertising. By statute, health claims on food labels must have significant scientific agreement, but in 2002, in response to a court decision, FDA decided to allow qualified health claims with less scien...
Food Irradiation: FDA Could Improve Its Documentation and Communication of Key Decisions on Food Irradiation Petitions
GAO-10-309R: Published: Feb 16, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 18, 2010.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), pathogens such as Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria cause an estimated 14 million cases of foodborne illnesses each year, resulting in about 60,000 hospitalizations and 1,800 deaths. Foodborne illness symptoms can range from mild gastroenteritis to life-threatening renal syndromes. The populations most susceptible to the more serio...
Food Safety: FDA Should Strengthen Its Oversight of Food Ingredients Determined to Be Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS)
GAO-10-246: Published: Feb 3, 2010. Publicly Released: Mar 5, 2010.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which is responsible for ensuring the safety of most of the U.S. food supply, is not required to review substances, such as spices and preservatives, added to food that are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for their intended use. Currently, companies may determine a substance is GRAS without FDA's approval or knowledge. However, a few substances previousl...
U.S. Agriculture: Retail Food Prices Grew Faster Than the Prices Farmers Received for Agricultural Commodities, but Economic Research Has Not Established That Concentration Has Affected These Trends
GAO-09-746R: Published: Jun 30, 2009. Publicly Released: Jul 30, 2009.
Over the past 25 years, farmers have received a decreasing share of the consumer food dollar. Some analysts and farm interest groups are concerned that this decline can be attributed, in part, to increasing concentration in agriculture. They believe that firms in highly concentrated markets may be able to exert market power by raising retail food prices while also depressing prices farmers receive...