Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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Food Labeling: Allergy Information

Description: Media attention to food allergies is the result of the recent tracking of food allergy sufferers and a clear rise in the number of affected individuals. Several efforts are underway to improve the ability of individuals who have a food allergy to avoid products that cause symptoms that can range from mild to serious. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Food Allergy Issues Alliance each have released guidelines to address the issues of labeling and cross-contamination. Nine state attorneys general have petitioned FDA for stricter rules, which are also supported by some consumer groups. The FY2002 agriculture appropriations bill directed FDA to address and report on cross-contamination; however, this report had not yet been submitted. Most recently, the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-282) was enacted on August 2, 2004. This report will provide background on food allergies and review efforts to provide improved labeling information for food allergy sufferers; it will be updated to reflect legislative or other activity.
Date: September 19, 2005
Creator: Porter, Donna V.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Country-of-Origin Labeling for Foods

Description: Federal law requires most imports, including many food items, to bear labels informing the “ultimate purchaser” of their country of origin. Meats, produce, and several other raw agricultural products generally have been exempt. The omnibus farm law (P.L. 107-171) signed on May 13, 2002, contains a requirement that many retailers provide, starting on September 30, 2004, country-of-origin labeling (COOL) on fresh fruits and vegetables, red meats, seafood, and peanuts. The program is voluntary until then. USDA on October 8, 2002, issued guidelines for the voluntary labeling program.
Date: September 26, 2003
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Country-of-Origin Labeling for Foods

Description: This report discusses the 2002 farm bill (P.L. 107-171) as amended by the 2008 farm bill (P.L. 110-246), which states that many U.S. retailers must begin providing country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for fresh produce, red meats, peanuts, chicken, ginseng, pecans, and macadamia nuts.
Date: September 16, 2008
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Food Assistance: Hurricane Katrina

Description: This report discusses the federal food assistance programs for those affected by Hurricane Katrina, making them automatically eligible for maximum benefits. It also is providing substantial amounts of direct food aid drawn from its commodity stocks.
Date: September 13, 2005
Creator: Richardson, Joe
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Sugar Policy Issues

Description: No Description Available.
Date: September 16, 2002
Creator: Jurenas, Remy
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility: Issues for Congress

Description: This report outlines current progress towards establishment of the National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF), presents current and projected funding levels and timelines, and describes policy issues of potential interest to Congress, such as agency coordination, possession of viruses, construction timelines, disposition of PIADC, and community safety concerns.
Date: September 26, 2008
Creator: Shea, Dana A.; Monke, Jim & Gottron, Frank
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Food and Agricultural Imports from China

Description: This report first provides information on the most recent Chinese-related food safety concern, the use of melamine in dairy ingredients. Following this section, the report provides data on U.S.-China trends in agricultural trade, examines U.S. programs to monitor the safety of imports, and reports on other recent Chinese food safety developments. It concludes with a brief discussion of the congressional role.
Date: September 26, 2008
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility: Issues for Congress

Description: This report outlines current progress towards establishment of the National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF), presents current and projected funding levels and timelines, and describes policy issues of potential interest to Congress, such as agency coordination, possession of viruses, construction timelines, disposition of PIADC, and community safety concerns.
Date: September 26, 2008
Creator: Shea, Dana A.; Monke, Jim & Gottron, Frank
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

What Is the “Farm Bill”?

Description: This report describes the Farm Bill (P.L. 110-246, Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, which was enacted into law on June 18, 2008.
Date: September 23, 2008
Creator: Johnson, Renée
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Agricultural Export and Food Aid Programs

Description: This report discusses projected agricultural imports and exports for FY2003, as well as legislation that deals with federal programs in support of agricultural exports and federal aid dedicated to farms and agricultural reform.
Date: September 16, 2002
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Agricultural Export and Food Aid Programs

Description: This report discusses projected agricultural imports and exports for FY2004, as well as legislation that deals with federal programs in support of agricultural exports and federal aid dedicated to farms and agricultural reform.
Date: September 10, 2003
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Food Assistance in Disasters: Hurricanes Katrina and Rita

Description: This report discusses federal food assistance in response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The Food Stamp program, child nutrition programs, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (the WIC program), and federally donated food commodities delivered through relief organizations provide major support in disasters like Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Existing laws authorize the Agriculture Department to change eligibility and benefit rules to facilitate emergency aid, and, in the short term, funding and federally provided food commodities are available without the need for additional appropriations.
Date: September 23, 2005
Creator: Richardson, Joe
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S.-Russia Meat and Poultry Trade Issues

Description: Russia announced on August 29, 2008, that it was banning poultry imports from 19 U.S. establishments due to safety concerns, and that 29 others could lose approval if they do not improve their standards. Russian officials also signaled that they might reduce U.S. permits to import poultry and pork under that country's quota system. The economic stakes of Russian import actions are high for U.S. poultry producers - 29% of their exports went to that market in 2007 - and red meat producers, who also are experiencing strong growth in the Russian market. In Congress, any potential options likely would be reviewed within the context of the broader geopolitical situation.
Date: September 11, 2008
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Agricultural Biotechnology: Background and Recent Issues

Description: Since the first genetically engineered (GE) crops (also called GM [genetically modified] crops, or GMOs, genetically modified organisms) became commercially available in the mid-1990s, U.S. soybean, cotton, and corn farmers have rapidly adopted them. As adoption has spread, there have been policy debates over the costs and benefits of GE products. Issues include the impacts of GE crops on the environment and food safety, and whether GE foods should be specially labeled. Congress generally has been supportive of GE agricultural products, although some Members have expressed wariness about their adoption and regulation. The 109th Congress will likely continue to follow trade developments, particularly the U.S.-EU dispute, as well as U.S. regulatory mechanisms for approving biotech foods.
Date: September 5, 2006
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Cowan, Tadlock
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Animal Identification and Meat Traceability

Description: U.S. animal agriculture is seeking to improve its ability to trace the movement of livestock from their birthplace to slaughter. The livestock and meat industries are working with the U.S. government to develop a national animal identification (ID) plan for livestock disease tracking purposes. This report focuses on animal ID and, to a lesser extent, on meat traceability.
Date: September 2, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Health and Safety Concerns Over U.S. Imports of Chinese Products: An Overview

Description: China is a major source of U.S. imports of consumer products (such as toys) and an increasingly important supplier of various food products. Reports of unsafe seafood, pet food, toys, tires, and other products imported from China over the past year or so have raised concern in the United States over the health, safety, and quality of imported Chinese products. This report provides an overview of this issue and implications for U.S.-China trade relations.
Date: September 22, 2008
Creator: Morrison, Wayne M.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department