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Issue Number: Council I 024


Consumer Advisory - Addition of Dairy

Issue you would like the Conference to consider

A Consumer Advisory informs consumers, particularly those who are unusually susceptible, of the risk of foodborne illness from the consumption of certain foods. The advisory should include dairy products, since certain dairy products carry a significantly increased risk of foodborne illness.

Public Health Significance

Certain consumers, particularly those with underlying medical conditions, are more at risk of contracting serious or deadly foodborne illnesses. The Consumer Advisory section of the Food Code seeks to mitigate this risk by providing notice to consumers that certain foods exacerbate this risk. However, the current Advisory fails to adequately inform consumers of the increased risks associated with the consumption of unpasteurized dairy products, including raw milk and raw milk cheese. The inclusion of the term "dairy," in combination with the existing language reading "raw or undercooked" is both a reasonable and necessary addition to provide notice to at-risk consumers. The inclusion of dairy is also in keeping with public health advice routinely disseminated by FDA in its communications to pregnant women and other at-risk populations.

Current outbreak data for dairy products supports the contention that consumers should be made aware of the additional risks posed by unpasteurized dairy. Please see the article here for a relevant summary:

Please see here for FDA's current risk advisory to pregnant women.

Recommended Solution: The Conference recommends...

That a letter be sent to FDA requesting the 2013 Food Code be amended to include the term "dairy" to the Consumer Advisory, Section 3-603.11(C)(2) and (3) as follows (new language is underlined):

3-603.11 Consumption of Animal Foods that are Raw, Undercooked, or Not Otherwise Processed to Eliminate Pathogens.

(C) REMINDER shall include asterisking the animal-derived FOODS requiring DISCLOSURE to a footnote that states:

(2) Consuming raw or undercooked MEATS, POULTRY, seafood, shellfish, dairy, or EGGS may increase your risk of foodborne illness; or

(3) Consuming raw or undercooked MEATS, POULTRY, seafood, shellfish, dairy, or EGGS may increase your risk of foodborne illness, especially if you have certain medical conditions.

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