National Health Policy Forum

Issue Brief

No. 773
Date: MAY 17, 2002
Title: How Vulnerable Is the Nation's Food Supply? Linking Food Safety and Food Security
Author: Robin J. Strongin, Consultant
Summary: This paper reviews the food safety regulatory apparatus in place today, especially the activities of the two lead agencies in assuring food safety — the Food and Drug Administration within the Department of Health and Human Services and the Food Safety and Inspection Service within the Department of Agriculture. It examines the system's strengths and vulnerabilities, particularly in light of the post–September 11 environment that includes the heightened threat of terrorism. The paper also touches upon legislative and budgetary proposals aimed at improving food security, including the growing but debated interest in a single food safety agency.