Last week, I had the good fortune to sit down with Dr. David Acheson, Assistant Commissioner for Food Safety at the Food and Drug Administration. I had wanted to meet him ever since reading about him in the Washington Post in July, 2007 in an article entitled "Meet David Acheson: Your Stomach’s Best Friend"
Since then, there have been a number of issues emerging connected with food safety – imports from China, e-coli outbreaks and the like. As 2008 approaches, it seemed like an opportune time to get his thoughts on the FDA’s priorities for food safety in the coming year.
During out discussion he outlined plans by the FDA for future protections and he covered ground related to consumer confidence – what has shaken it and what it will take to restore it. We talked about Chinese imports in the context of today’s global trade environment.
I think that in the wake of some of the FDA reform aimed at the pharmaceutical side of the FDA mission has taken place this year, in the coming year, there may be a shift by policy-makers to addressing the issue of food safety, with reform perhaps being the creation of a single food agency, rather than the current system of food jurisdiction split between FDA and USDA. You will hear his thoughts on that front as well.
He is an extremely eloquent and interesting individual. Enjoy the podcast.