Executive Update

FDA Commissioner Hamburg Talks Global Food Safety

Margaret Hamburg, commissioner, the Food and Drug Administration, spoke on the importance of food safety, in light of the recent passage of the Food Safety and Modernization Act.

“I want to focus on the important, exciting and cutting edge work that we’re doing together in the realm of food safety.  I think we all recognize that we live in a rapidly transforming world, which brings new challenges as we strive to achieve the safety and wholesomeness of the food that we eat, and that we feed our families,” said Hamburg.

For the first time, FDA has a legislative mandate for preventive controls across the food supply, and stressed the law’s focus on import safety and the responsibility domestic companies have to the global food market.

“Global food safety systems are fundamental. They are essential to fighting the burdening threats of hunger, foodborne illness, and major economic losses. Globalization has mobilized the scope and scale of our responsibilities. Products are no longer our products, but global products. All stakeholders in the food system now face the crucial task of strengthening food safety in order to safeguard public health, while promoting food security and economic development.”

As FDA seeks to finalize the regulations and guidelines that will define the far-reaching law, GMA has been working closely with the administration.

“FDA has been a very good partner with the industry on this,” said GMA President and CEO Pamela Bailey. “It's been a very good dialogue.”

Hamburg echoed the sentiment by stating, “We have found in GMA a truly outstanding partner.”