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According to Trust for America’s Health (TFAH), in a 2008 report, there are “major gaps in the nation’s food safety system, including obsolete laws, misallocation of resources, and inconsistencies among major food safety agencies”.
TFAH stresses that “Our goal should be reducing the number of Americans who get sick from foodborne illness. But we can’t adequately protect people from contaminated foods if we continue to use 100 year-old practices”.
TFAH also reports in a separate article that progress made to better protect the country from bioterrorism is now at risk and that major gaps remain in many critical areas of preparedness, including food safety. Some serious 2008 health emergencies include a Salmonella outbreak in jalapeno and Serrano peppers that sickened 1,442 people in 43 states and the largest beef recall in history in February.
Twenty states and D.C. did not meet or exceed the national average rate for being able to identify the pathogens responsible for foodborne disease outbreaks in their states.
US Food Safety will publish blogs about individual states preparedness in food safety.