The History of Food Safety Regulation in the United States and Canada
chapter in Ensuring Global Food Safety: Exploring Global Harmonization (Boisrobert et al., ed., Academic Press / Elsevier, 2009)
Posted: 23 Jun 2018
Date Written: 2009
An overview of the historical roots of food law in the United States and Canada. The history of adulteration of food is as old as the trade in food. This history shows recurring patterns. As food trade expands and food processing increases, so does the opportunity and the scope of adulteration. Legislatures have followed rather than led food safety reform. Scientists and analytical methods have played a critical role in increasing awareness of food safety risks. Public outrage has also played a role. The food industry also plays an important leadership role out of enlightened self-interest in improved food safety. However, rarely have any of these factors alone been enough. Major food law revision occurs when all—scientists, the public, and food industry leadership—are galvanized, too often by outrageous tragedy.
Keywords: food law
JEL Classification: K
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation