Tag Archives: safety

The United Kingdom shouldn’t allow imports of food that fall short of the country’s own standards when it draws up trade agreements. That thought comes directly from the head of the UK’s National Farmers Union.

NFU President Minette Batters says domestic production standards should be used as a benchmark in trade talks. Business Times Dot Com says her comments signal that British farmers would face a setback if the government allows imports of products that are treated with certain chemicals or made using lesser animal-welfare rules.

After leaving the European Union last month, the UK is working on getting trade talks going with multiple nations that cover everything from food trade to data protection. “It’s not just about chlorinated chicken,” Batters says in a statement. “This is about a wider principle. We must not tie the hands of British farmers to the highest rung of the standards ladder while waving through food imports which may not even reach the bottom rung.”

As it has in America, trade uncertainty is weighing down UK farm sentiment, with one-year confidence falling to its third-lowest point since 2010.

(Washington, D.C, February 25, 2020) – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced the appointment of Paul Kiecker to serve as Administrator of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). Mr. Kiecker will be assuming the role following the departure of Administrator Carmen Rottenberg, who is departing federal service after a career spanning two decades.

 

“Ensuring the safety of America’s food supply is USDA’s most important responsibility, and one that Carmen carried out with dedication and vision. I know she will continue her passion for food safety in the private sector,” said Secretary Perdue. “Carmen is a true public servant and ushered in an era of modernization at the Food Safety and Inspection Service. This mission and drive will continue and advance with Paul Kiecker in his new leadership role. USDA’s food safety team is the best in the world and works tirelessly to safeguard the food we serve our families every single day.”

 

Carmen Rottenberg served as Administrator since May of 2018 but led the agency since August of 2017. As Administrator, Rottenberg spearheaded efforts to modernize the agency and implemented several key initiatives to target foodborne illness. Through her leadership and oversight, an unprecedented level of collaboration was achieved with federal, state and municipal agencies and other stakeholders.

 

“My colleagues in FSIS are among the best and brightest in federal government, and I am confident that the Agency will continue to “do right and feed everyone,” long after my last day in this office,” Carmen Rottenberg said. “Each and every day our FSIS team displays unparalleled commitment to decision making that is both protective of public health and supportable by science and data. They are public servants in the truest form of the term. It’s been a thrill and absolute joy to work with Secretary Perdue and this USDA team, and I’m so proud of all we have accomplished.”

 

“I am thankful to have had the opportunity to work so closely with Carmen over the past year,” said Deputy Under Secretary Mindy Brashears. “Her leadership and food safety expertise will be greatly missed within the Department, but I am excited to see her succeed in her new ventures ahead. As we move ahead into 2020, I am confident in the direction of the agency as we have experienced senior staff who are ready to step into new leadership roles.”

 

Background:

Paul Kiecker was named Deputy Administrator for the FSIS in May of 2018 and served as the Agency’s Acting Administrator until January of 2019. Throughout his 30 years with FSIS, he has been committed to a strong public health vision that has guided him to overcome obstacles, identify opportunities for improvement, manage resources efficiently, and achieve food safety objectives to prevent foodborne illness.

 

Since joining FSIS in 1988 as a food inspector, Kiecker has served in a number of roles at the agency, including Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Field Operations. He came to Washington, D.C. to serve as Executive Associate for Regulatory Operations, after serving as the District Manager in Springdale, AR and Madison, WI, as well as Deputy District Manager in Madison, WI. Kiecker’s experience with FSIS also includes work with the Office of Investigation, Enforcement, and Audit, where he has served as a Compliance Investigator and as Supervisory Compliance Officer.