Today, the Senate and House conference committee approved the FY2010 Agriculture Appropriations bill including $3.376 billion for food and drug safety. The bill provides funding for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). Under the bill, funding for these two agencies would increase $353 million over last year's level. Kohl is the Chairman of the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee.
"Though the Food and Drug Administration and the Food Safety and Inspection Service have worked tirelessly to ensure our safety there is more work to be done." Kohl said. "This funding will provide resources and programs necessary to administer these essential services and the equipment and personnel needed to detect, prevent and manage emergencies."
The funding will further Kohl's initiatives to press for rapid response teams and allow interstate commerce in state-inspected meat products. Included in the bill is $65 million to support state meat inspection programs.
In 2007, Kohl convened hearings on food safety in both Washington and Wisconsin, and has since worked to boost funding for the FDA, increase the number of food safety inspectors domestically and abroad, and develop new, regional rapid response teams across the country to identify and isolate contaminated produce at its source.