4034.0 Contaminants in our Food Supply – Persistent Gaps in Monitoring, Assessment, and Control of Contamination

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 8:30 AM
Food is a major source of exposure to many types of contaminants and there is currently inadequate monitoring and oversight of the food supply to ensure it is free of both biological and industrial chemical contaminants. Earlier this year, the Food Safety Modernization Act, the first major overhaul of the nation’s food safety law in over 70 years, was signed into law. The new law will refocus FDA from primarily reacting to food borne disease outbreaks and adulteration incidents after they occur, to preventing contamination of the food supply before it happens. This focus on prevention through increased inspection and the issuance of new safety standards will go a long way to improve the safety of our food supply. However, the new law will not address non-biological contaminants in the food supply which present a threat to public health. This session will begin with an overview of the positive impacts and changes expected under this important new law and then will discuss persistent gaps in FDA policies that endanger our food supply. Three case studies of contaminants and FDA deficiencies not addressed by the new legislation will be presented: Gulf Coast seafood safety assessment after the BP oil spill, monitoring of pesticide residues in produce, and contamination of the food supply by hormone disrupting substances (e.g. phthalates and bisphenol A) approved as food additives.
Session Objectives: 1. Differentiate between the contaminants covered in the new food safety legislation and those that are not covered. 2. List major gaps in the current food safety regulatory system and how the new food safety legislation will make improvements. 3. Identify major non-biological contaminants found in the U.S. food supply and strategies to reduce human health risk.
Sarah Janssen, MD, PhD
Sarah Janssen, MD, PhD

8:45 AM
Flaws in FDA assessment of Gulf Coast seafood following the BP oil spill
Karen Wong, MD MPH, Miriam Rotkin-Ellman, MPH and Gina Solomon, MD, MPH
9:00 AM
Pesticide Residues on Food: FDA's Flawed Monitoring Program
Miriam Rotkin-Ellman, MPH, Jennifer Sass and Gina Solomon, MD, MPH
9:15 AM
Exposure to hormone disrupting chemicals from food
Kathleen Navarro, MPH, Sarah Janssen, MD, PhD, MPH and Gina Solomon, MD, MPH

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: Food and Nutrition
Endorsed by: Environment, Veterinary Public Health

See more of: Food and Nutrition