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Food safety bill nears in Senate

The Senate is scheduled to vote as early as Wednesday on a long-delayed food-safety bill that gives new authority to the FDA. The bill would give the FDA the power to mandate food recalls, keep better track of fruit and vegetable shipments so contaminated commodities can be found more quickly and set new standards for food manufacturers. There are about 76 million cases of food-borne illnesses every year in the U.S. that result in 325,000 hospitalizations and 5,000 deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Senate is scheduled to vote as early as Wednesday on a long-delayed food-safety bill that gives new authority to the Food and Drug Administration, amid signs that the bill might have a path to get through Congress before the end of the year.

The bill would give the FDA the power to mandate food recalls, keep better track of fruit and vegetable shipments so contaminated commodities can be found more quickly and set new standards for food manufacturers. It doesn't address meat safety, which is the responsibility of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

To read the more, see Bill Tomson's WSJ article.

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