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U.S. Unveils Stricter Food-Safety Standards
Date:7/7/2009

er for consumers to eat. The regulation is designed to cut down the number of illnesses caused by eggs contaminated with the bacterium salmonella.

The key now is that eggs will have to be refrigerated from farm to market.

The FDA said salmonella is a major cause of foodborne illness in the United States, and raw or undercooked eggs are a major source of such infections. An estimated 142,000 illnesses each year in the United States are caused by consuming eggs contaminated with salmonella, the agency said.

The measures announced Tuesday follow a series of high-profile food-borne illness outbreaks recently.

In one of largest product recalls in U.S. history, the Peanut Corporation of America earlier this year recalled peanut products due to a salmonella outbreak that sickened hundreds, and was suspected of causing nine deaths.

In the last month, E. coli contamination prompted the recall of Nestle Toll House cookie dough, and 380,000 pounds of beef produced by the JBS Swift Beef Co. of Greeley, Colo.

In response to Tuesday's announcement, the Grocery Manufacturers Association issued a statement that said: "Food safety and consumer confidence is the number one priority for the food and beverage industry -- we are responsible for providing our consumers with the safest manufactured goods possible and we take that responsibility very seriously. We look forward to working with the Administration and Congress to enact reforms that will improve food safety, boost consumer confidence and address the challenges posed by today's 21st century food supply."

More information

For more on food safety, visit the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.



SOURCES: July 7, 2009, teleconference with U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, and Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack; '/>"/>

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