"WASHINGTON — The outbreak of salmonella in eggs is energizing efforts to pass a long-stalled food-safety bill that could prevent or mitigate such problems, according to federal officials, congressional supporters and independent experts.
The bill, designed to overhaul a fractured food-safety system that hasn't been updated in decades, would expand federal regulators' powers to police food manufacturers. The House passed a version in 2009, but the legislation has stalled in the Senate, despite bipartisan support.
Among other things, the legislation would require more frequent government inspections of food manufacturing facilities and the creation of stronger mechanisms for tracing food-borne illness outbreaks back to their source. The bill also would give the Food and Drug Administration authority to order recalls of food that may be tainted with salmonella, E. coli O157:H7 and other contaminants..."