On Wednesday night, the controversial food safety bill failed to pass in the United States House of Representatives. Farm states were not in favor of the bill, and many thought it had been pushed forward too fast — but what now?
Well, there is a fairly sizable contingent of support for the bill, and the Democrats could call for another vote very quickly under simple majority rules.
We need the bill to prop up more food safety, more inspections, etc. But it can’t suffocate those non-big-business food producers trying to come up with alternatives forms of food production – something this bill could do if I understand it correctly. As Tom Philpott puts it:
I hope House members account for the concerns of small producers. We clearly need a new food-safety regime—and in some respects, this bill makes baby steps in the right direction. Underfunded watchdog agencies and laissez-faire enforcement have allowed the corporations that dominate our food system to routinely put millions at risk. But fixing that problem can’t mean stepping on the necks of the producers hard at work building alternative food systems.
Read More: With House food-safety bill a done deal, questions remain (Grist)