Every year, 48 million Americans get sick from the food they eat. And a whopping 3 million of them die. So what is the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doing about this? Judging by a scary new study, not much.
Bloomberg Markets recently got a hold of four audit reports and three audit certificates from food inspectors and guess what they found?Â Six of these audits were given approval ratings right before or right after they supplied toxic food. That included cantaloupe, eggs, peanut butter and turkey suppliers. Scary, right?
Know what else is scary? The fact that millions of people get sick and die every year because of these toxins in our food. The very toxins that should be prevented by these so-called food inspections. But they’re not.
In fact, in 2011 the FDA inspected a mere six percent of domestic food producers and just 0.4 percent of importers. As for the rest of the food industry, they hire inspection companies to ensure what you put in your mouth is safe. Except that the FDA has no criteria for how these food inspectors must do their jobs. On top of that, they aren’t requiredÂ to meet any federal standards, and they have no government supervision, and a large number of food suppliers are never inspected. That pretty much explains why 48 million of us get food poisoning every year including the god-awfulÂ salmonella, which is responsible for most of the illnesses and deaths.
Doug Powell, a professor of food safety at Kansas State University andÂ lead author of an August study on third-party monitors called â€śAudits and Inspections Are Never Enough told Bloomberg that we are at risk every time we go to the grocery store:
The outbreaks weâ€™re seeing are endless.Â You need to be in a culture that takes food safety seriously. Right now, what we have is hidden. The third-party auditor stickers and certificates are meaningless.
Don’t you just want to go eat something right now?
Oh, and by the way, the rate of illnesses from food rose 10 percent from 2006 to 2010. So if you think what you’re serving for dinner tonight is safe, there’s a chance that it’s not.