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GAO Releases Report on Economic AdulterationGAO Releases Report on Economic Adulteration

December 6, 2011

1 Min Read
GAO Releases Report on Economic Adulteration

WASHINGTONA report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) recommends that FDA adopt a working definition of economic adulteration, enhance communication and coordination of agency efforts, and provide guidance to agency centers and offices on the means of addressing economic adulteration. As defined in the report, economic adulteration is the "deliberate substitution or addition of harmful ingredients in food and drugs ... to increase the apparent value of these products or reduce their production costs."

Following several instances of economic adulteration, the U.S. Congress asked GAO to conduct a review of how FDA oversees the safety of food and drugs in order to prevent and respond to economic adulteration. The subsequent report examines (1) the approaches that FDA uses to

detect and prevent economic adulteration of food and medical products and (2) the challenges FDA faces in detecting and preventing economic adulteration.

The key challenges, the report notes, include the increased globalization of the food supply chain and a lack of information from industry. Moreover, an increase in supply chain complexity has further complicated federal efforts to trace adulterated ingredients to the source.

Click here to read the complete report.

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