UPDATE: What you can do regarding H.R. 875

Slow Food Nation '08 Garden
San Francisco City Hall


As some of you have requested, this is an update to my last post in which I discussed H.R. 875: Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009.

Although an okay piece of legislation, the language is too broad and non-specific as it stands. For example, the bill defines a "food production facility" as:

"FOOD PRODUCTION FACILITY- The term 'food production facility' means any farm, ranch, orchard, vineyard, aquaculture facility, or confined animal-feeding operation."

As written, this bill could potentially create some serious future issues for anyone that grows, stores, or distributes fruits and vegetables or other foods including:

-farmer's markets
-community bake sales
-Slow Food Nation gardens
-private gardeners who donate produce overage to food banks
-backyard poultry owners
-urban community gardens
-roadside produce stands

Because of the nonspecific language of the bill, the above could be required to adhere to strict federal registration, tracking, and inspection guidelines or be subject to a fine of $1,000,000.

Are you potentially a "food production facility" under this broad definition?

There are a number of groups that are opposing this legislation with tactics that can be interpreted as "fear mongering". In my opinion, using these extreme approach waters down your otherwise legitimate voice.

What you can do

If you feel that this bill needs to be rewritten or killed all together because of its ambiguity and lack of definition, the first action you can take is to write to the member of Congress that represents you. You can do that via the internet by visiting http://www.congress.org

Take part in making sure that the laws being formed and passed in our nation's capital are in your best interest.

The following is a sample letter I wrote that you may wish to use as a springboard when writing your own letter:

Dear Rep. ___________,

Please oppose H.R. 875: Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009 as it is currently written. The definition of "food production facility" is too broad as it stands reading:

"FOOD PRODUCTION FACILITY- The term 'food production facility' means any farm, ranch, orchard, vineyard, aquaculture facility, or confined animal-feeding operation."

As written now, this bill has a huge loophole that would require federal regulation of all of the above as well as:

-farmer's markets
-community bake sales
-Slow Food Nation gardens
-private gardeners who donate produce overage to food banks
-backyard poultry owners
-urban community gardens

This is a waste of taxpayer dollars and an infringement on basic Constitutional rights. Instead, resources would be better utilized by
focusing on improving the existing FDA regulations.

Please oppose this bill until it is re-written with specific size delineations that will not impact small farmers and any of the above.

Sincerely your constituent,
You
Pin It!

5 comments:

Melanie said...

I'm sure this will be so helpful to Americans reading your blog. What a worry for so many people.

Willow said...

Thanks, Cindy.

Carolynn said...

Oh boy, I feel for you guys down there. I can feel the energy drain. Good for you for taking this on and illuminating it for everyone. Good luck with it.

Joanie said...

Cindy, Thank you for your research on this bill and making us aware of our need for action. I've contacted my congressman.
Love you,
YLA

Heidi Ashworth said...

GOOD TO KNOW! Thanks!

© 2007-2014 All rights reserved Rosehaven Cottage Inc.
All images, photos and writing (unless otherwise noted) belong to
Cindy Garber Iverson and Rosehaven Cottage Inc.
Use of content in digital or print form is strictly forbidden without written consent.
Just ask... I may say "yes".
Photography Prints
celebrations.com Invites & eCards
//Pin it button