When human or animal food products are unsafe, the government issues a
recall. Recalls are a way to let consumers know about dangerous food in the
marketplace. In the summer of 2010, for example, hundreds
of millions of eggs were recalled because of salmonella contamination.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has the primary
responsibility for food safety. It issues most food and drug recalls. Recalls
may also be initiated by other government agencies. The U.S. Department of
Agriculture (USDA) is responsible for monitoring meat and eggs.
The FDA is responsible for the safety
of food and drug products. If a product is considered unsafe, they may issue a
recall. Traditional media covers most large recalls. However, the best and most
accurate place to look for food recalls and alerts is the official FDA Recalls, Market Withdrawals, &
Safety Alerts website. The site presents a calendar detailing all alerts.
You can search for past recalls and track ongoing food safety developments.
The USDA regulates agricultural products, including certain foods. USDA.gov is a good source of information concerning food production and
distribution. It also contains helpful information concerning the preparation
and storage of food. Laws and regulations relating to food production are
available there as well.
There are a number
of other good food safety resources online. One particularly useful one is FoodSafety.gov. This site is run
by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
a helpful “Recalls and Alerts” box on the home page. It’s an excellent way to
stay aware of any news regarding hazardous foods. The site also has various
charts and information about how to store and prepare food. It’s a great place
to learn how to keep your food safe.
Recalls.gov is another helpful site. It collects all government recalls in one
place. It is not limited to food recalls.
Links to Online Food Safety Resources