American Greed: Food safety at risk?

President Trump has proposed cutting the Food & Drug Administration's budget by 31 percent. Food safety advocates say that could roll back reforms put in place after one of the worst food contamination outbreaks in U.S. history.

(CNBC) President Trump has proposed cutting the Food & Drug Administration’s budget by 31 percent.

Food safety advocates are concerned that the administration could roll back reforms put in place after one of the worst food contamination outbreaks in U.S. history.

That salmonella outbreak began in late 2008 when Peanut Corporation of America CEO Stewart Parnell instructed employees to ship out peanut products he knew were tainted with salmonella.

Nine people died as a result. The crisis helped spark the first overhaul of the nation’s food safety laws since the 1930s. On a bipartisan basis, Congress passed the Food Safety Modernization Act, or “FISMA,” signed by President Obama in 2011. The worry now is that with President Trump, all bets are off.

Marion Nestle, an expert on food policy, says resources are already stretched thin.

“The FDA is very short staffed, and very underfunded, and only inspects about one percent of imported foods,” Nestle notes.

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