Many of you have been e-mailing me about S.510, a very dangerous (and expensive) food bill which was moved yesterday to the Senate floor for voting. I have also been getting e-mails from organizations concerned about our right to choose our own food, our local farmers, and out of control government spending. It seems that every organization I have any contact with is extremely concerned about the ramifications of this bill. I have written 2 previous posts about S.510, and am encouraging you once again to contact Senators Lincoln and Prior regarding this bill. Below are the details from the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund.
CALL Your SENATORS ASAP
Implore Them to Reject S.510
S.510 presents a major threat to the local food movement, States' autonomy to regulate food, and America's ability to be self-sufficient in food production. S.510 will significantly increase the power of FDA, an agency which has stated on public record that the American people have no ''fundamental right to their own bodily and physical health" and "do not have a fundamental right to obtain any food they wish".
S.510, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act of 2010 needs to be stopped!
Call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121; ask to be connected to your Senator's office.
Go to http://www.congress.org/ and enter your zip code on the right side under "Get Involved" and click "Go".
Click on your Senators' names then click the "Contact" tab to get the office phone number(s). Clearly state that you are calling about S510, the Food Safety bill. Ask for your Senator to Vote Against S.510. Be sure to give your Zip Code.
If you get an answering machine, leave a brief message and immediately call another office.
Ask Friends & Family to Call, too!
WHY AMERICANS NEED TO TAKE ACTION
S.510 will expand FDA's jurisdiction over intrastate commerce and impose one-size-fits-all regulations that will make it difficult for many small businesses to survive. (See Talking Points at the end.)
How bad can a federal food safety bill be? Let me count the ways! Better yet, let Senator Coburn give you a short video tutorial on the underlying problems with S.510.
FDA's failure to exercise its current powers hardly justifies rewarding the agency with expanded authority in the aftermath of the egg recall and peanut butter fiasco.
Moreover, FDA has proven itself untrustworthy to operate in the best interest of the American public as clearly seen in allowing the nontherapeutic use of antibiotics in animals and its lax policy regarding genetically modified foods.
Congress needs to get the message: Solve the real food safety problems--the centralized food distribution system and imported foods--and not regulate our local food sources out of business.
Go to www.farmtoconsumer.org/stopS510 to use the online "Reject S.510 Petition" to send a live email to your Legislators and local newspaper editor.
Tell your Senators to protect local foods and vote against S.510.
1. FDA has more than adequate powers under existing law to ensure food safety and effectively deal with foodborne illness outbreaks. FDA has power to inspect, power to detain product and can readily obtain court orders to seize adulterated or misbranded food products or enjoin them from being sold. The problem isn't that FDA needs more power; it's that FDA does not effectively use the power it currently has.
2. S.510 will give FDA extensive power to regulate food in intrastate commerce; state and local governments are more than capable of handling any problems related to food in intrastate commerce. All the major outbreaks of foodborne illness involve either imported food or food in interstate commerce.
3. S.510 will hurt our ability as a nation to be self-sufficient in food production; it has more lenient inspection requirements for foreign than domestic producers creating an unfair advantage for food imports. Giving an advantage to foreign producers will only increase the amount of food imported into this country that does not meet our domestic standards. S.510 does not address food security--the ability of a country to produce enough food to meet its own needs.
4. S.510 will provide a competitive advantage to industrial food producers--the sector of the food system causing most of the food safety problems; the bill will impose burdensome regulations on many small businesses, a number of whom won't have the economies of scale to comply with S.510's requirements.
5. S.510 does nothing to address many significant food safety problems in this country, such as those resulting from confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs), genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and various contaminants (e.g., BPA, pesticides, herbicides, etc.).