Market Alternatives for Food Safety
Most Americans go about their daily lives convinced that the Federal government, through the auspices of the Department of Agriculture, protects them from eating poisoned food. If not for the USDA or the Food and Drug Administration, they imagine, every food item on the store shelf would be suspect. Restaurateurs would unwittingly sell E. coli-infected meat and produce to their customers on a daily basis, and the simple act of eating would become like a game of Russian roulette. But what if that protection was largely an illusion? What if there were other simpler, quicker, and more efficient alternatives to food safety than the USDA? Would it not be sensible to abandon this outdated bureaucracy in favor of alternatives?
In fact, evidence is emerging that government institutions that were once heralded as protectors of the consumer have failed to adapt effectively to contemporary problems in food safety. Instead, an unlikely alliance of private consumer protection groups, scientists, and lawyers has come forward to respond to this issue. These private individuals are investing their own time and resources to hold the food industry accountable—a task that proponents of the USDA and the FDA have long discounted as being too large for non-governmental entities to handle…
Posted on November 10, 2010, in Columns and tagged Department of Agriculture, E. coli, Federal Oversight, Food and Drug Administration, Food Safety, Lawsuits, Regulations. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.