US federal agencies seek to leverage expertise on foodborne hazards

By Georgi Gyton

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Medicine, Nutrition, Foodborne illness

A number of US federal agencies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the aim of providing a more comprehensive approach to dealing with foodborne health hazards, associated with meat, poultry and processed egg products.

The MOU, signed by the US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), is part of the country’s One Health initiative, which links together the health of humans, animals and the environment.

It outlines the roles and responsibilities held by each agency, for the training of personnel and the planning of interagency assessment of FSIS-regulated establishments as part of foodborne illness investigations and health hazard evaluations.

Al Almanza, administrator, FSIS, said: "The FSIS investigation process identifies health hazards in meat and poultry products, and this agreement leverages the expertise of personnel from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry to complement that process."

Beth P Bell, MD, MPH, director of CDC’s National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, added: "This agreement builds on the current working relationship between our agencies with respect to food safety and reaffirms our mutual commitment to a multidisciplinary approach to conducting foodborne disease investigations."

Related topics: Meat

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