Our nation’s veggie safety screening program is also under the knife in House GOP budget plans! This is news of two just fantastic science budget decisions in one day! And in this case, by “fantastic” I mean “potentially deadly”.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture runs something called the Microbiological Data Program, which tests grocery store veggies for dangerous contaminants. What contaminants? Like deadly E. coli. Like the deadly E. coli that recently ravaged Western Europe.
The price tag on the MDP comes to $4.5 million out of a total agriculture budget of $125.5 billion. It would be easy to just say that this is a victim of tightening belt, but it’s well known that the agriculture biz doesn’t like this program and the recalls it causes. Something smells rotten.
Hope now lies in the Senate.
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