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NFPA SAYS PESTICIDE USE DECISION SHOWS NEED FOR DELANEY CLAUSE REPEAL

NFPA SAYS PESTICIDE USE DECISION SHOWS NEED FOR DELANEY CLAUSE REPEAL
 WASHINGTON, July 9 /PRNewswire/ -- A Federal Appeals court decision that would ban many pesticides that leave residues in processed foods, even if they are deemed to pose a negligible risk to consumers, points to the need to pass legislation that repeals the Delaney Clause, the National Food Processors Association (NFPA) said today.
 "This ruling confirms the fact that the 35-year-old Delaney Clause is outmoded," said NFPA President John R. Cady. "Unless the law can weigh negligible risk against benefits to the food industry and consumers, there will be disruptions in food production and in the food supply."
 The Delaney Clause (Section 409 of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act) became law in 1958. It created an absolute prohibition on residues of carcinogenic pesticides, in any amount, in processed foods.
 "This action will not result in significant risk reduction, but rather in regulatory gridlock," Cady said. "This decision isn't a step forward for public health; it's a move toward legal and procedural chaos."
 "The ruling, unless successfully appealed, would have the effect of removing a significant number of currently available pesticide uses," pointed out Lester Crawford, NFPA's executive vice president, scientific affairs. "Of greatest concern would be the loss of minor-use applications which would severely affect the availability and quality of many essential fruits and vegetables. It is important to understand that these pesticide cancellations resulting from the court ruling would be strictly for procedural reasons -- not for reasons of public health."
 NFPA strongly supports proposed legislation that would replace the Delaney Clause with a negligible risk clause, allowing regulators to weigh the benefits against the risks in approving pesticide residues. "H.R. 3614 -- The Bruce-Bliley Bill -- has over 130 co-sponsors, which means more than one-third of Congress is in favor of such reform," Cady noted.
 "While the Court's decision had been anticipated, it is disappointing nonetheless," Cady stated. "Now, Congress has to pay attention to this issue and move it out of the realm of politics and into reality. NFPA has worked long and hard for fundamental reform of the Delaney Clause, and this decision shows why such reform is long overdue."
 NFPA is the scientific voice of the food industry. The association's 500 member companies produce the nation's processed- packaged fruits and vegetables, meat and poultry, seafood, juices and drinks, and specialty products.
 COMMENTS BY NFPA
 "This ruling confirms the fact that the 35-year-old Delaney Clause is outmoded. Unless the law can weigh negligible risk against the benefits to the food industry and consumers, there will be disruptions in food production and the food supply," Cady said.
 "This action will not result in significant risk reduction, but rather in regulatory gridlock. This decision isn't a step forward for public health; it's a move toward legal and procedural chaos," Cady said.
 Crawford said: "It is important to understand that these pesticide cancellations resulting from the court ruling would be strictly for procedural reasons -- not for reasons of public health."
 -0- 7/9/92
 /CONTACT: Timothy Willard of the National Food Processors Association, 202-637-8060/ CO: National Food Processors Association ST: District of Columbia IN: SU: LEG


TW -- DC007 -- 7822 07/09/92 11:13 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 9, 1992
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