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Food Tracking Improvement Act Introduced

Posted: September 23, 2008

Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio has introduced legislation, H.R. 3422, to amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act to provide for the establishment of a traceability system for food for all stages of manufacturing, processing, packaging and distribution.

The traceability system would require each article of food shipped in interstate commerce to be identified in a manner that enables the Secretary to retrieve the history, use and location of the article through a recordkeeping and audit system, a secure, online database or registered identification.

No one would be allowed, without authorization from the Secretary of Health and Human Services, to alter, detach, or destroy any records or other means of identification prescribed by the Secretary for use in determining the location at which any article of food was held.

In order to assist the Secretary in implementing the traceability system, an advisory committee would be established consisting of 13 members with food safety and tracking technology expertise as well as consumer advocates.

The advisory committee would be required to submit a report to the Secretary with recommendations on enabling the reliable tracking of food and food products.