White House Establishes Food Safety Working Group

      Posted On: May 15, 2009

In his March 14th Weekly Address, the President announced the creation of the Food Safety Working Group, chaired by the Secretaries of the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Agriculture. As the President said, the working group “will bring together cabinet secretaries and senior officials to advise me on how we can upgrade our food safety laws for the 21st century; foster coordination throughout government; and ensure that we are not just designing laws that will keep the American people safe, but enforcing them.”
The White House Listening Session today is intended as an opportunity to engage stakeholders in a conversation to help shape the principles guiding reform. The opening remarks will be followed by smaller group breakout sessions with Administration and Congressional staff and stakeholders to discuss how to address major challenges and opportunities in this area. Along with the ideas and exchanges from the breakouts, Working Group staff will be sifting through public comments from all of the channels above to find valuable ideas and get a hint of what people interested in this topic are thinking.

Food safety is a serious topic. Farmers market supporters who want to ensure that food safety policy does not endanger the livelihoods of small direct-marketing farmers, and that regulatory changes are scale-sensitive and focus on the areas of highest risk (large, wholesaling production and processing operations), are encouraged to:

  • Watch the opening of the Food Safety Working Group Listening Session at WhiteHouse.gov/live, kicked off by Secretary Sebelius and Secretary Vilsack, the co-chairs of the Working Group.