WASHINGTON — The Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009 failed to pass in a House of Representatives vote yesterday. The bill — which would have expanded the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's powers over the national food supply, granting the agency more authority over how crops are raised and harvested, as well as the authority to issue mandatory recalls, quarantine geographic areas and establish a national food traceability program — did not achieve the required margin of two-thirds of total votes in the House.
Representatives from the Food Marketing Institute expressed disappointment yesterday, with president and chief executive officer Leslie Sarasin saying "although the majority of the House of Representatives voted in favor of the Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009, we are disappointed the legislation did not pass as a result of the House rules process in place for this particular vote, which required approval by two-thirds of those voting.
"We would urge the House of Representatives to consider the bill under regular order, which requires a simple majority," she stated.
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