Prepared Foods of March 21, 2005 enewsletter

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is not doing enough to enforce the ban on feed linked to the spread of Mad Cow Disease, congressional auditors say.

The Government Accountability Office, the investigative wing of Congress, said that while the FDA has made improvements in its management of the feed ban, "various program weaknesses continue to undermine the nation's firewall against BSE."

The FDA, in response, said it believed its inspection approach to the feed-ban rule was adequate.

BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy) is believed to result from feeding protein material from one ruminant, such as cattle, to another. Consuming meat from infected cattle is thought to have caused the deaths of about 150 people worldwide and resulted in the slaughter of 5 million cattle in Europe to stop the spread.