Food Safety Symposium Planned for Halloween

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Food Safety Symposium Planned for Halloween

WASHINGTON -- In what's being touted as a first-of-its-kind collaboration, representatives of national consumer organizations and major food companies will jointly convene a public symposium Oct. 31 at the Embassy Suites Convention Center Hotel here, to discuss ways to improve food safety through the wider adoption of industry-developed best practices.

The symposium, which will include industry senior executives and food safety leaders, as well as national consumer food safety advocates, is being held by Cooperating for Food Safety (CFS), a new nonprofit consumer-led organization formed specifically to foster collaboration among consumers and food producers, processors, and retailers to advance wider adoption of best practices, including innovative food safety procedures and technologies. CFS is working with several companies to establish an ongoing CFS Forum as the vehicle for collaboration, with the Oct. 31 event the first joint effort.

The CFS Best Practices Symposium will look at how the beef industry has learned to deal with the threat of E. coli to explore how state-of-the-art preventive process control systems and technologies can improve food safety across the food supply. Along with the beef sector, the symposium will address opportunities, for and barriers to, broader adoption of best practices in the poultry, produce, seafood, and retail sectors.

Attendees will include Nancy Donley, CFS board chair and president, Safe Tables Our Priority (S.T.O.P.); Bill Buckner, corporate v.p., Cargill, Inc.; Danny Wegman, chairman and c.e.o., Wegmans Food Markets; Caroline Smith DeWaal, director of food safety for the Center for Science in the Public Interest; David Theno, s.v.p., quality and logistics, Jack in the Box; Rick Roop, s.v.p., food quality assurance, Tyson Foods; Charlie Sweat, president, Earthbound Farms; Craig Wilson, assistant v.p., food safety and quality assurance, Costco Wholesale Corp.; and Catherine Adams, corporate v.p. for worldwide quality, food safety, and nutrition, McDonald's.

"Ensuring a safe food supply requires effective government regulation, combined with continued innovation by all segments of the food industry, to prevent or destroy bacterial contamination from the farm to the checkout counter," noted Donley in a statement. "This symposium will highlight what is possible now to advance food safety by shining a light on best practices across the food system from production to processing to retail and foodservice."

The CFS Best Practices Symposium is expected to draw over 200 consumer advocates, public health officials, food safety experts, food industry and policy makers. For more information contact Chris Waldrop at [email protected]