FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, OCT. 8, 2008
Joe Reardon, director
NCDA&CS Food and Drug Protection Division
NCDA&CS wins federal grants worth $2 million
to protect food and animal feed
RALEIGH – The Food and Drug Protection Division at the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services recently won federal grants worth as much as $2 million to protect food and animal feed, Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler announced.
“A safe food supply is critical to protecting public health and our economy,” Troxler said. “These grants will enhance our ability to protect the food we eat and the feed our animals eat.”
The division received a three-year, $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to set up rapid response teams that can take action during food emergencies. The grant money will be used for training, equipment and technology. Five other states also received grants to establish teams.
“These teams will give us the ability to act very quickly to minimize public health risks and reduce the potential economic impacts of food-related incidents,” Troxler said.
North Carolina was one of four states selected by the FDA to receive a two-year grant worth nearly $500,000 for efforts to prevent the introduction of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, also known as BSE or “mad cow disease.”
The United States has banned the use of certain cattle materials in feed for cattle and other ruminant animals since 1997. Beginning in April 2009, the ban will apply to all animal feed, including pet food.
The grant will help support the division’s feed-sampling and testing capabilities. The division also will use the grant money for compliance inspections at companies involved in the manufacture, distribution and transportation of animal feed. In addition, the grant will support education and outreach to farms that mix their own feed for ruminant animals.