FDA Awards US$5.2 million in grants to further food and feed safety

Publish time: 1st October, 2008      Source: www.cnchemicals.com
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October 1, 2008


FDA Awards US$5.2 million in grants to further food and feed safety


The US Food and Drug Administration announced the awarding of 17 grants to enhance food and feed safety.



These grants fund major cooperative agreements in four major areas. The FDA awarded a combined US$5.2 million in these one-year grants to various state and local regulatory agencies.



Michael Chappell, the FDA''s acting associate commissioner for regulatory affairs, said the grants represent an important step in the FDA''s continued efforts to integrate and improve the effectiveness of food safety systems at the federal, state and local levels.



For example, the cooperative agreements for the Ruminant Feed Ban Support Programme further enhance the infrastructure of state, territorial, and tribal animal feed safety and mad cow diseaseprevention programmes.



Under these cooperative agreements, state, territory, and tribal governments will enhance their feed/BSE safety programmes to increase the ability to locate and visit feed companies as well as operations feeding ruminant animals, and to verify their compliance with the BSE/ruminant feed ban.



Funds may also be used to conduct educational outreach activities and to develop materials needed to further enhance the industries'' knowledge of and compliance with the BSE/ruminant feed ban.



The awards were up to US$250,000 and the states receiving them were Iowa, Mississippi, North Carolina and Washington.



The grants for Food Safety and Security Monitoring provide funding to Food Emergency Response Network chemistry laboratories essential to intervention efforts. The grants may be used for facility upgrades, training in current food testing methodologies, and increased laboratory sample analysis capacity, among others.



In the event of a large-scale chemical terrorism event affecting food or food products, the recipient may be required to perform selected chemical analyses of food samples collected by the FDA or provided by other government agencies through the FDA. The states receiving these grants were Colorado, California and Ohio and were given up to US$350,000.



The Innovative Food Defense grants will generate novel solutions and outreach to address gaps in food defense nationwide -- for example, implementing the food defense programmes in food establishments.



Each recipient was awarded up to US$40,000. The funded counties were Riverside County Dept. of Environmental Health (California) and Multnomah County Department of Health (Ore.). The funded states were Pennsylvania and South Carolina.



Another part of the funding would cater to the first-ever Rapid Response Team (RRT) cooperative agreement which will develop an all-hazards food and food-borne illness response capability to rapidly react to potential threats to food supply.



The RRTs will respond to all food hazard incidents in the farm-to-table continuum of food production and delivery by using a formalized crisis management system.



Each recipient was awarded up to US$500,000 to exercise its response team, conduct a programme assessment, purchase additional equipment and supplies. The funded states were North Carolina, Massachusetts, California, Michigan, Florida and Minnesota.