Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Consumer Demand Flavors Food Import Safety Issues

An ever-changing U.S. consumer who enjoys the convenience of ready-to-eat produce and seasonable fruits during the dead of winter has brought new challenges to food import safety, experts said Oct. 18.

With U.S. food imports set to top more than $2 trillion this year and expected to triple by 2015, a panel on food safety commissioned by President Bush met at Texas A&M University to discuss ways to strengthen the national and global import infrastructure.

Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach, Food and Drug Administration commissioner, said the nation’s consumer is one who “expects to eat strawberries in February.”

That has led to more change and complexity among how food is processed and delivered into the U.S.

“This nation and the people we serve, and their health that’s so critically important, is threatened - not that we haven’t been doing a good job,” he said.

“In fact, we’ve been doing an incredibly good job. But the world is rapidly changing around us. Although we have been the gold standard (in food safety), we must respond and be prepared for new challenges that are emerging from radical changes.”

Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples told the group “consumers’ tastes and preferences are changing.

“They are demanding specialty products from around the world, seasonal products such as fruits and vegetables,” Staples said.

The working group, comprised of senior officials from 12 federal departments and agencies, is charged to report an action plan by mid-November. Additional information on the panel’s activities can be found at .

The panel recommendations for the day were summarized by Dr. Kerri Harris, director or the Center for Food Safety and one of the organizers of the event.

They were:

- No single entity has sole responsibility for making sure
imported food is safe. Cooperation between all entities -- including governmental agencies, industry and universities -- is essential to regain public trust.

- All decisions have to be based on the best available science.

- Current technology for traceback and communication has to be
applied and new technology developed.
- A push for a major education and training component has to be applied in the U.S. and internationally.
- Data sharing – even though there may be legal hurdles to
overcome – between industry and government would be very beneficial.
The meeting at Texas A&M included import safety experts from eight universities and five corporations. Issues such as global process control, verification activities, and supply chain management were discussed throughout the day.

“Texas A&M is a leader in food safety research, and we’re very honored to be host of this important conference,” said Dr. Elsa Murano, vice chancellor and dean for agriculture and life sciences at Texas A&M.

Blair Fannin | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht “How trees coexist” – new findings from biodiversity research published in Nature Communications
22.03.2018 | Technische Universität Dresden

nachricht Earlier flowering of modern winter wheat cultivars
20.03.2018 | Georg-August-Universität Göttingen

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Researchers Discover New Anti-Cancer Protein

An international team of researchers has discovered a new anti-cancer protein. The protein, called LHPP, prevents the uncontrolled proliferation of cancer cells in the liver. The researchers led by Prof. Michael N. Hall from the Biozentrum, University of Basel, report in “Nature” that LHPP can also serve as a biomarker for the diagnosis and prognosis of liver cancer.

The incidence of liver cancer, also known as hepatocellular carcinoma, is steadily increasing. In the last twenty years, the number of cases has almost doubled...

Im Focus: Researchers at Fraunhofer monitor re-entry of Chinese space station Tiangong-1

In just a few weeks from now, the Chinese space station Tiangong-1 will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere where it will to a large extent burn up. It is possible that some debris will reach the Earth's surface. Tiangong-1 is orbiting the Earth uncontrolled at a speed of approx. 29,000 km/h.Currently the prognosis relating to the time of impact currently lies within a window of several days. The scientists at Fraunhofer FHR have already been monitoring Tiangong-1 for a number of weeks with their TIRA system, one of the most powerful space observation radars in the world, with a view to supporting the German Space Situational Awareness Center and the ESA with their re-entry forecasts.

Following the loss of radio contact with Tiangong-1 in 2016 and due to the low orbital height, it is now inevitable that the Chinese space station will...

Im Focus: Alliance „OLED Licht Forum“ – Key partner for OLED lighting solutions

Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, provider of research and development services for OLED lighting solutions, announces the founding of the “OLED Licht Forum” and presents latest OLED design and lighting solutions during light+building, from March 18th – 23rd, 2018 in Frankfurt a.M./Germany, at booth no. F91 in Hall 4.0.

They are united in their passion for OLED (organic light emitting diodes) lighting with all of its unique facets and application possibilities. Thus experts in...

Im Focus: Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

Oceans formed before Tharsis and evolved together, shaping climate history of Mars

A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...

Im Focus: Tiny implants for cells are functional in vivo

For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.

In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

Virtual reality conference comes to Reutlingen

19.03.2018 | Event News

Ultrafast Wireless and Chip Design at the DATE Conference in Dresden

16.03.2018 | Event News

International Tinnitus Conference of the Tinnitus Research Initiative in Regensburg

13.03.2018 | Event News

Latest News

Modular safety concept increases flexibility in plant conversion

22.03.2018 | Trade Fair News

New interactive map shows climate change everywhere in world

22.03.2018 | Earth Sciences

New technologies and computing power to help strengthen population data

22.03.2018 | Earth Sciences

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>