Washington Post: For food-safety overhaul, lobbyists rushed to the table

Written by admin on December 7th, 2010

The Washington Post breaks down the spending by lobbyists on the recent food safety bill.

Washington Post

At least 221 organizations hired 77 lobbying shops to quibble over details in the Food and Drug Administration Food Safety Modernization Act since it was introduced by sponsor Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.) at the beginning of last year. At times, industry organizations and corporate heavyweights with a stake in the bill — such as the Grocery Manufacturers Association, the National Restaurant Association, the Natural Products Association, Abbott Laboratories and Anheuser-Busch — retained multiple District firms to represent their interests. Many also deployed their own government relations staff to the Hill, a Capital Business analysis of Senate lobbying records shows.

For Policy Directions Inc., which specializes on food industry issues, the comprehensive food law update was a perfect storm. Nearly every member of the shop once worked in the FDA, USDA or agriculture-related organizations, making it an obvious choice for the nine clients that hired it for food safety act work. The impending overhaul prompted Indiana-based Rose Acre Farms to hire a federal lobbying firm for the first time in four years. Since the family-run egg producer retained Policy Directions in January, it has paid the firm $60,000 for its work on the food safety act and other unspecified general agricultural issues.

 

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