Panels will examine on-farm food safety challenges

Officials from government, industry, academia, and public health groups will convene in Washington on October 2 to discuss how to enhance food safety by improving practices on farms. The conference was announced today by the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI).

The one-day conference will address how animal production practices affect food safety, how on-farm practices can reduce human pathogens in animals, whether regulatory agencies need greater authority, and what farmers can do to improve the safety of fruits and vegetables.

Among the speakers are Robert Buchanan, U.S. Food and Drug Administration; Dan Glickman, former Secretary of Agriculture; Carol Tucker Foreman, Consumer Federation of America; Gary Weber, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association; Temple Grandin, Colorado State University; and Alex Thiermann, United Nations Office of International Epizootics (OIE).

“Reducing and eliminating food safety hazards should begin on farms and feed lots and not processing plants and slaughterhouses,” said Caroline Smith DeWaal, CSPI’s food safety director. “So much more can be done at the farm level to prevent millions of illnesses and thousands of needless deaths each year. This conference will let the media and public hear about potential solutions to these problems.”

The conference, titled “Clean Plants, Healthy Animals,” will take place on October 2, 2003 at the National Press Club, 529 14th Street, NW in Washington, D.C. The full conference agenda, list of participants, and registration materials are available at