Posts Tagged ‘FDA’

Rx Drugs: Timed-Release Bribery?

July 9, 2018

Rx Drugs: Timed-Release Bribery?

“An analysis by the publication Science has ‘found widespread after-the-fact payments or research support’ from pharmaceutical companies to expert officials who advised the Food and Drug Administration to approve those companies’ drugs.”

— “Pharma companies pay FDA advisers after drugs are approved,” Bob Herman, Axios

More:

“Hidden conflicts? Pharma payments to FDA advisers after drug approvals spark ethical concerns,” Charles Piller and Jia You, Science

“Majority of doctors who oversee FDA drug approval receive payments from companies they monitor, report shows,” Clark Mindock, The Independent

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Top image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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‘Evaporated Cane Juice’

June 1, 2016

Evaporated Sugar Cane Juice

“In recent years the term ‘evaporated cane juice’ has appeared as an ingredient on food labels, most commonly to declare the presence of sweeteners derived from the fluid extract of sugar cane. However … FDA’s view is that such sweeteners should not be declared on food labels as ‘evaporated cane juice’ because that term does not accurately describe the basic nature of the food and its characterizing properties (i.e., that the ingredients are sugars or syrups) …. Moreover, the use of ‘juice’ in the name of a product that is essentially sugar is confusingly similar to the more common use of the term ‘juice’ — ‘the aqueous liquid expressed or extracted from one or more fruits or vegetables, purees of the edible portions of one or more fruits or vegetables, or any concentrates of such liquid or puree’ (21 CFR 120.1(a)). Thus, the term ‘evaporated cane juice’ is false or misleading because it suggests that the sweetener is ‘juice’ or is made from ‘juice’ and does not reveal that its basic nature and characterizing properties are those of a sugar.”

Guidance for Industry: Ingredients Declared as Evaporated Cane Juice, Office of Nutrition and Food Labeling Food Labeling and Standards Staff, HFS-820 Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

More:

“Evaporated Cane Juice? Puh-leeze. Just Call It Sugar, FDA Says,” Dan Charles, NPR

“Evaporated cane juice: Sugar by any other name…” Marion Nestle, Food Politics

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Drugs on TV

February 22, 2011

Drugs on TV

The U.S. government has allowed prescription drug hucksters to come between patients and their doctors for over a dozen years now. Television commercials give consumers important medical information by using images of flowers, butterflies, smiling faces, puppies, and kittens. They also enrich our culture with the sheer poetry of those lists of side effects.

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Girl Scouts Fib About Fatty Cookies

February 15, 2011

Girl Scouts Fib About Fatty Cookies

The Girl Scouts gave some of their cookies a merit badge they really don’t deserve.

Boxes of Samoas, Tagalongs and Thin Mints, the most popular cookies in the whole troop, have worn “0 grams trans fat” badges since 2007, but partially hydrogenated oils are their second and third largest ingredients.

But don’t blame the GSA, blame the FDA. Food and Drug Administration rules allow products to be marked “0 grams trans fat” if the amount per serving is below 0.5 grams. So if you make food out of artery-clogging trans fatty acids, just make the servings smaller and you can label those packages “0 grams trans fat,” too.

 More:

“The Girl Scout Cookie lie: No trans-fats,” The Week.

 

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Can Our Food Be Made Safe From Republicans?

January 5, 2011

Can Our Food Be Made Safe From Republicans?
President Obama signed the Food Safety Modernization Act into law yesterday. The legislation improves the security and safety of America’s food supply, allowing the Food and Drug Administration to protect us from foodborne illness and contaminated comestibles, both foreign and domestic. That’s something to everyone’s taste.

Unless they’re Republican. The GOP is defending the rights of toxic bacteria to have access to your digestive tract.  To do that, Republican lawmakers will try to starve the FDA of the funds needed to enforce effective food safety regulation.

The Congressional Budget Office puts the expense of enforcing the law at $1.4 billion over five years, with most costs offset by fees, but spending must still be approved by the majority-Republican House. The cost of treating foodborne illness instead of preventing it: $152 billion a year.  Costs over five years: $1.4 billion if we enforce the law, $760 billion if we don’t.

Each year 48 million Americans get sick from eating something; 128,000 of them are hospitalized, and 3,000 die. Every year. Apparently, that’s OK with the GOP.

 

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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GAO: Beef Up Foreign Food Inspection

May 19, 2010

GAO: Beef Up FDA Foreign Food Inspection

Barry Estabrook points out that Senate legislation mandating more regulation and inspection of US food growers and processors ignores the globalization of our nation’s food supply:

“There are about 190,000 registered foreign facilities that produce food for export to the United States. Of those, only 200 (roughly 1 out of every 1,000) were inspected by the FDA.”

See the Government Accountability Office report on this issue: “FDA Could Strengthen Oversight of Imported Food by Improving Enforcement and Seeking Additional Authorities,” Statement of Lisa Shames, Director, Natural Resources and Environment, GAO, May 6, 2010.

Hat tip: MarkBittman.com

 

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Stealth MSG

March 14, 2010

Stealth MSG

An FDA recall of contaminated acid-hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HVP) has led to scrutiny of this misunderstood ingredient of industrial food products. HVP sounds like a means of adding nourishment to manufactured foodstuffs, but it is actually a flavor-enhancer, a  neuro-exciter. Active ingredient: glutamic acid. You may recognize one of its salts, monosodium glutamate (MSG). 

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FDA Inspectors at Work!

February 19, 2009

FDA Inspectors at Work!
Image: U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Honest.

 

Why is everybody saying such mean things about FDA inspection of medical devices, drugs, and the food supply?

As you can plainly see (above), FDA Investigators Mac and Molly are on the job!  Is that a peanut butter factory?

Join Mac and Molly for fun and games at FDA!

 

Note: Bugs and rats get sick from eating tainted peanut butter, too, so refresh this page if they stop moving. FDA is probably testing a “Refresh Patch” for use on humans. Keen!

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.