Almost two-thirds of American consumers state that they have confidence in U.S. government agencies to protect food safety, according to a recent research project conducted by the Alliance for Food and Farming (AFF). And, 78 per cent of consumers state they have confidence “that government regulations and other food safety efforts are working well to protect public health.” These results are similar to a previous survey conducted by the AFF in 2016.
The non-profit organization is based in Watsonville, California.
But there is bad news for the authors of the “dirty dozen,” list who annually and inaccurately disparage the safety of popular, more affordable and accessible produce items. By a significant two-to-one margin, consumers state they agree with the government-based safety information shared by the AFF over the disinformation shared by the “dirty dozen” list authors.
More specifically, consumers responded favourably to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) annual findings that 99 per cent of the foods tested had residues well below safety standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency, with a third having no detectable residues at all. Conversely, the “dirty dozen” authors take these very positive results from the USDA and manipulate them to create its list and invoke unwarranted safety fears. The AFF research results show most consumers aren’t buying this data manipulation any longer.
What other government-based information reassures consumers? More than 80 per cent said learning more about the Food Safety Modernization Act’s Produce Safety Rule enhanced their confidence in the safety of fruits and vegetables. The Produce Safety Rule implemented science-based standards developed by the FDA for the safe growing, harvesting, and packing of fruits and vegetables.
In addition to government safety standards in place, another simple fact should be among the most reassuring: a farmer’s first consumer is their own family so produce safety is always the priority.
Source: Alliance for Food and Farming August 1, 2022 news release