Food safety was not on President Donald Trump’s list of topics during his first speech before a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, but his announcement of Ray Starling as part of the National Economic Council might signal the commander and chief is heading in a good direction.
The appointment gives Jim Gorny, vice president for food safety and technology for the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) and former senior adviser for produce safety at the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, reason to hope that the new administration is trying to become better informed on key issues.
“It sounds like President Trump is using Ronald Reagan's model of using councils of informed people as advisers,” says Gorny. "Starling has all the bases covered in terms of advising the White House on food safety. He grew up on a North Carolina farm, so he knows agriculture from the inside and understands food safety and agriculture involve more than beef and wheat."
During his speech Tuesday night, the president did reference the FDA, but only in the context of his desire to streamline and speed up the government’s processes for approving medical treatments.
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