Congressional Food Safety Hearing

June 12, 2008
by Elizabeth Cohen

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: This hearing on Capitol Hill, a lot of people are paying attention because there are more outbreaks of food-borne illness than there have been in the past. And a lot of people are asking, why is that? COHEN: A lot of people today on Capitol Hill [are] extremely critical of the FDA. Let's take a listen to one consumer advocate.

DR. JEFFREY LEVI, EXEC. DIR., TRUST FOR AMERICA'S HEALTH: The current outbreak of salmonella associated with tomatoes is a perfect demonstration of our need for a modernized food safety system. It shouldn't have taken so many people getting sick from salmonella poisoning for the government to start taking nationwide action to protect the American people, but it did. Not only has it taken us too long to recognize the threat, we are still struggling to find its source and we should have had systems in place to prevent this in the first place.