Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy Report Prompts Progress Towards Stronger Baby Food Safety Standards, But FDA Is Light on Details
“Today’s announcement sends the message that we will not put up with anyone hurting our kids. We presented evidence of a pervasive problem of toxic heavy metals in baby foods, and the Biden administration’s FDA began to address it within a month. This represents a welcome change at FDA. Now that we have partners in the public health agencies, it’s reason for optimism for what we can accomplish going forward.
“However, we are disappointed that FDA failed to commit to establishing concrete rules to remove toxic heavy metals from all baby foods. It highlights the need for Congress to pass legislation with strict standards and timelines. Babies don’t have time to wait for FDA to fill in details. Parents: I encourage you to keep pushing for progress with us.”
Today, FDA announced its intention to reduce toxic heavy metals in baby food: “FDA is finalizing a comprehensive plan to further reduce levels of toxic elements in foods for babies and young children.” FDA sent a letter to industry, putting manufacturers on notice that FDA would use its existing authority under the Food Safety Modernization Act to lower toxic heavy metal levels in baby foods. FDA’s letter to industry was prompted by the Subcommittee’s report:
“in light of a report released on February 4, 2021, by the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy that raises important questions on what more can be done to reduce toxic elements in baby food.”
Manufacturers will now be expected to institute preventative controls for heavy metals.
FDA also indicated that more extensive regulatory standards will be developed for the first time in history.