No matter how careful you are, foodborne bacteria can find a way into your child’s lunch and make him or her sick. Symptoms can include diarrhea, vomiting, stomach cramps and fever. Children are often among the most vulnerable, and in some cases, illnesses can lead to hospitalization, long-term health complications and even death.
Using safe food-handling practices, such as keeping food refrigerated, cooking it to proper temperature and washing hands and utensils while preparing food at home can help minimize the growth and spread of contamination. However, safe handling alone doesn’t always eliminate bacteria that may already exist in food when it comes from the field or processing facility.
That’s why a prevention-based food safety system outlined in the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act is key to effectively reducing risks. But it needs to be fully implemented to work.
Check out the interactive sandwich below to learn more about which dangerous bacteria can pose a threat, and urge the White House to finalize the new regulations as soon as possible, so we can ensure a safer food supply – and sandwich – for all Americans.
"All over the region, little pockets of activity are coalescing into a collaborative Food Revolution a la Jamie Oliver, the British chef who champions healthier food in schools and elsewhere. Last fall at the One Young World conference held here, he challenged Pittsburgh to revamp its eating habits -- and Pittsburgh's delegates took him seriously."
"First lady Michelle Obama visited the U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) earlier this month and praised the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act, the 2010 law designed to make school lunches more nutritious. Audrey Rowe, the administrator of the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), oversees federal nutrition assistance and education programs, including the 2010 law. Rowe spoke with Tom Fox, a guest writer for On Leadership and vice president for leadership and innovation at the nonprofit Partnership for Public Service. He also heads the Partnership’s Center for Government Leadership." More info
"Representatives from National Food Group handed out samples of what could be on next year’s menu. Students sampled beef barbacoa with roasted vegetables, whole grain cheese ravioli with chunky marinara sauce and baked cod filet. Other items were cranberry oatmeal bars and breakfast items oatmeal chocolate vertical bars and berry apple crisp vertical bar."
"The Pew Charitable Trust recently issued a statement recognizing this as a significant step to help children nationwide. The School Food Modernization Act would help schools improve their meal programs in two ways. One part of the legislation would authorize a USDA competitive grant program through which schools could obtain training and technical assistance for foodservice employees."
In January 2011, President Barack Obama signed the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) into law, signaling the first major update to our nation’s food safety oversight framework since the Great Depression. Despite widespread support for the legislation and its implementation, the Obama administration still has not issued all of the proposed rules under FSMA.
"Recent changes to the federal school lunch program require more fresh fruits and vegetables to be served, but many schools in Iowa and across the country lack the fridge space needed to store large quantities of fresh produce, the Republican lawmaker said."
"High school students don't need to have access to caffeine on campus. Snacks sold at elementary and middle schools shouldn't have as many calories as those sold at high schools. And maybe schools shouldn't have vending machines or a la carte lunch lines at all."