In 2007, 30 million pounds of ground beef was pulled off the U.S. market in a series of twenty recalls because of contamination concerns. The recalls highlight serious concerns in our deregulated food safety system. Over the last decade we've reduced the number of food safety inspectors and instead rely more on the food industry to regulate itself.
While the U.S. domestic food safety system is cracking, we are importing more food than ever - with imports projected to grow. The Bush Administration's response to concerns that other countries may actually have weaker food safety systems than the U.S. is to push a series of proposals, developed along with the food industry, to expand the U.S. deregulation model to other countries.
This report analyzes the Bush Administration's plan on import food safety and offers some concrete steps for the next administration to bolster food safety.