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 September 27, 2003
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U.S. Unveils Plan to Safeguard Food Supply
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U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy G. Thompson has announced $5 million in funding to create a new program to develop technologies and strategies to prevent and minimize potential threats to the safety of the nation's food supply.

At the same time, the Food and Drug Administration released a report detailing the department's efforts to protect food security -- including a more-than-five-fold increase in the number of imported food examinations.

The report, submitted by FDA Commissioner Mark D. McClellan to Thompson on Thursday, highlights the department's progress in making the food supply safer and more secure, in 10 critical areas. For instance, the FDA so far this year has quintupled the number of imported food examinations it conducted, compared to fiscal year 2001.

The increased coverage includes a rise in the number of ports of entry with FDA staffing from 40 to 90, and enhanced collaboration with other government agencies to protect the food supply more efficiently.

The $5 million in new research funding comes from the post-9/11 Emergency Response Fund, officials say.


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