by Marion Nestle
Aug 21 2008

Goodie! Irradiated spinach!

The FDA has just sent me its latest Constituent Update. This one announces that the FDA has approved a petition from the Grocery Manufacturers Association on behalf of the Food Irradiation Coalition (guess what that is) to allow irradiation of fresh iceberg lettuce and spinach. Never mind insisting that producers and packers produce safe produce, let’s just zap it! The FDA is collecting comments on this dubious initiative, and it must know what to expect: “Electronic objections may be submitted to the Federal eRulemaking Portal at”

If you do weigh in, be sure to refer to Docket No. FDA-1999-F-2405 (formerly 1999F-5522). The request for comment isn’t posted yet, but presumably will be soon at the Constituent Update site.

And here’s what the European food industry community has to say about this.

  • Sheila

    I’m glad you brought this up. This afternoon, I heard a news story about this on NPR, and they also said this irradiation teatment is already used on meats in this country. If this is so, how do we still have pathogenic E. Coli in our meat and still have to recall meat?

  • Amber

    So now where do I buy produce that is un-zapped? Obviously my local organic farmers market is the best choice, but what about supermarkets?

  • Jill

    I’m curious to find out how effective irradiating really is. Are there any studies by a non-biased source out there? Regardless, I sure hope the produce will be labelled as irradiated, so that we can all “vote with our forks” as Marion likes to say!

  • I just read an article about the coming Victory Garden rage in 2009. Can’t think of a better reason to grow my own.

  • Matt

    Dang, the European Food article link is broken 🙁