Having a hard time keeping up with the onslaught of food-oriented legislation? Get ready for the next round. The Food Safety Bill is scheduled to hit the Senate floor this week, after having been eclipsed by menu labeling laws and health care reform for months.
The bill could help make the lives of restaurateurs’ easier and their businesses safer by setting up a better-regulated food supply. Specifically, it seeks to empower the FDA with more authority over food manufacturers, giving the agency mandatory recall authority and the power to require food facilities to maintain stronger safety plans. The legislation also is focused on more frequent processing plant inspections and expanding traceback capabilities.
But while the bill is clearly aimed at food providers and manufacturers, restaurateurs are responsible a certain degree at the end of the chain. Just how much is still a matter of debate.