NCBA Opposes House Continuing Resolution with Food Safety Bill Attached
WASHINGTON – The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) today, Dec. 8, 2010, sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) opposing the trillion dollar Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the federal government through September 2011. NCBA Executive Director of Legislative Affairs Kristina Butts said the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act should be considered only as a standalone bill.
“NCBA opposes the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act because food safety knows no size. We are disappointed House leadership included it in the CR without allowing an up or down vote on a bill as “robust and sweeping” as the food safety bill,” Butts said. “The CR is not the appropriate means to consider the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act. NCBA strongly opposes the CR in its current form.”
Specifically, NCBA is opposed to language offered by Senators John Tester (D-Mont.) and Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) exempting small food producers and processors from the legislation included in the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act. Butts said food safety knows no size and federal food safety policy should be based on sound science and applied to all food producers and processors regardless of size or proximity to the market. NCBA opposed the food safety legislation in the Senate and joined 16 organizations representing food producers and processers opposing the Tester/Hagan language in the House.
According to NCBA’s letter opposing the CR, “Food safety is too important to everyone involved in the production and consumption of food to be dealt with in this manner.”
“Rather than continuing down the path of funding our government and federal programs through the CR and omnibus bills, Congress should make it a priority to go through a more methodical, transparent and timely appropriations process,” Butts said. “NCBA understands the critical importance of funding our government and federal programs as well as the importance of food safety. However, we believe these issues deserve the due diligence of Congress. We urge House members to simply provide a short-term extension to the expiring CR.”