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Posted Sat Jun 13 2009: from TIME Magazine:
Congress Finally Gets Tough on Food Safety
Every few months, it seems, a new food-contamination scandal grips the nation, playing out in the same troubling way. Someone dies of a food-borne infection with a scary Latin name. The government recalls a dinner-table staple and traces its contamination to dirty irrigation water or a processing plant. Everything returns to normal until the next case of killer spinach or poisoned peanuts stalks the nation. Despite the toll -- 5,000 deaths and 325,000 hospitalizations a year -- Congress has typically been unwilling to strengthen controls on the growing, manufacturing and handling of food in the face of powerful industry resistance. But as profits and consumer confidence have plummeted with each new outbreak, the political climate has changed -- so much so that earlier this week, a House panel reached unusual bipartisan consensus on the most sweeping reform of the food-safety system in at least 50 years.
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