Prevention is the Key to Food Safety
By the time you finish a contaminated meal, it’s too late to save you from illness. Contaminated food can cause problems ranging from mild upset stomach to death. Experts estimate that 5,000 Americans die from foodborne illness each year.
Preventing food poisoning in the first place, rather than hoping to catch contamination upon inspection, could save thousands of lives. As newly appointed FDA head Margaret Hamburg said, “Prevention is the key to food safety.”
Whether targeting Salmonella or Listeria, preventing harm to the common food chain has replaced inspection as the FDA’s new attack. Strengthened food safety legislation is brewing in Congress from a number of sponsors — each variation touts prevention as its core.
Inspectors will rate farms, factories and food companies more often, and food companies will be held to higher standards of performance and documentation. Traceability protocols will be tightened. The power to recall bad food and levy stricter fines and penalties, including imprisonment, will be granted. Although, American food executives and legislators can rest a little easier than other countries — in China, contamination can lead to execution.
But government cannot always lead the way. Private industry must raise the bar and be held accountable. A new era of food safety will require new ideas, new services and new products such as iPura, an innovative food safety program based in California. The iPura company offers an organic processing technology that prevents contaminants from reaching dinner tables.
iPura uses environmentally friendly, science-based methods to destroy disease-causing bacteria, then seals the clean product, resulting in “The Highest Standard in Food Safety.” iPura started with seafood but will soon be cleaning poultry and produce. Shoppers can identify iPura’s foods by its seal of authenticity, which appears on every product bearing its preventive invention.