The National Food Processors Association (NFPA) applauded the approval today by the Senate Agriculture Committee of a bill to establish uniformity of food safety warning requirements throughout the 50 states, calling the bill “consumer-friendly legislation.”
NFPA has been a leading advocate for the introduction and passage of national uniformity
“This is a significant step forward in eliminating potential food label confusion for consumers,” said Brian Folkerts, NFPA’s Senior Vice President of Government Affairs. “There is no valid reason why standards to ensure food safety and prevent deception should be different for citizens in different states, particularly in view of our highly mobile society. For labels on food products to be meaningful for consumers, they must contain clear and consistent information — no matter in which state the product is sold.”
The bill, S. 1155, was introduced by Senator Pat Roberts (R-Kansas), a member of the Senate
Agriculture Committee and former Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee. The bill,
which currently has 34 cosponsors, would amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act
(FFDCA) to prevent states from enforcing requirements relating to food safety warnings that are
not identical to requirements under the FFDCA. A companion bill in the House of
Representatives (H.R. 2129) currently has 115 cosponsors.
“NFPA has long urged that the regulations governing food safety warning requirements be
amended to establish a single standard throughout the United States, overseen by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration,” Folkerts stated. “This would establish one national regulatory
system that is fully protective of consumers, but which does not place undue burdens on interstate commerce.”
Folkerts pointed out that the food industry has long suffered from cross-jurisdictional differences between policies and regulations promulgated by different agencies, adding that “Currently, each of the 50 states can implement its own warning requirements, adding unnecessary regulatory burdens that inhibit interstate commerce.”
Folkerts noted that “Since the early 1990s, NFPA has been outspoken in its advocacy of the need for national uniformity. We applaud the Agriculture Committee for listening to the food industry and for approving S. 1155. NFPA urges the full Senate to promptly consider and passage this important legislation.”
NFPA is the voice of the $460 billion food processing industry on scientific and public policy issues involving food safety, nutrition, technical and regulatory matters and consumer affairs.