Saturday, October 02, 2010
Food Safety Bill Could Be Dangerous For U.S. Economy
The following are 12 reasons why S. 510 could be absolutely disastrous for small food producers and for the U.S. economy....
#1 All food production facilities in the United States will be required to register with the U.S. government. No food will be allowed to be grown, distributed or sold outside this bureaucratic framework unless the FDA allows it.
#2 Any food that is distributed or sold outside of U.S. government control will be considered illegal smuggling.
#3 The FDA will hire an army of new inspectors to enforce all of the new provisions in the bill.
#4 The FDA will be mandated to conduct much more frequent inspections of food processing facilities.
#5 The fees and paperwork requirements will be ruinously expensive for small food producers and organic farms.
#6 S. 510 would place all U.S. food and all U.S. farms under the Department of Homeland Security in the event of a major "contamination" or an "emergency". What exactly would constitute a "contamination" or an "emergency" is anyone's guess.
#7 S. 510 mandates that the FDA facilitate harmonization of American food laws with Codex Alimentarius.
#8 S. 510 imposes an annual registration fee on any facility that holds, processes, or manufactures food. It also includes draconian fines for paperwork infractions of up to $500,000 for a single offense. Just one penalty like that would drive a small food producer out of business.
#9 S. 510 would give the FDA tremendous discretion to regulate how crops are grown and how food is produced in the United States. Basically, small farmers and organic farmers will now be forced to farm exactly how the federal government tells them to. It is feared that the U.S. government would soon declare that many organic farming methods are "unsafe" and would outlaw them. In addition, there is the very real possibility that at some point the U.S. government could decide that the only "safe" seed for a particular crop is genetically modified seed and would require all farmers to use it.
#10 S. 510 will give the FDA the power to impose a quarantine on a specific geographic area. Basically the FDA would have the power to stop the movement of all food in an area where a "contamination" has been identified. This would be very close to being able to declare martial law.
#11 S. 510 will give the FDA the power to conduct warrantless searches of the business records of small food producers and organic farmers, even if there has been no evidence at all that a law has been broken.
#12 Opponents of S. 510 believe that it would eliminate the right to clean and store seed. Therefore, control of the U.S. seed supply would be further centralized in the hands of Monsanto and other multinational corporations.
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