Perdue rethinks Codex, Warehouse Act moves
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue is rethinking moving the U.S. Codex Office from the Office of the Undersecretary for Food Safety to the new Office of the Undersecretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs, and the movement of the Warehouse Act functions from the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration to the Agricultural Marketing Service, Politico reported Friday.
In letters to Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and Senate Agriculture ranking member Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., Perdue thanked the committee for its support of his reorganization and wrote, “We believe that these two areas merit further discussion given issues raised by stakeholders, and USDA will continue to examine those issues before moving forward with those two pieces of the realignment.”
Former federal food safety officials and the Food and Drug Administration said that moving the Codex Office to a division that promotes exports could cause officials in other countries who deal with the Codex Alimentarius Commission, the U.N. body that sets international food safety standards, to question whether U.S. positions are based on science and food safety concerns.
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