Lansing, MI – The government shutdown has affected some services and duties of federal agencies, including the U.S Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
During this time, food inspectors from the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD), as well as food sanitarians from Michigan’s 45 local health departments, continue to conduct food safety inspections to protect public health and the safety of the state’s food supply.
MDARD inspects grocery stores and other food establishments, processing facilities and wholesale food operations, while local health departments inspect restaurants, cafeterias, and other food-service operations at schools and hospitals throughout Michigan.
These inspections work to ensure food safety rules and regulations are enforced and to identify and correct any problems found, thereby protecting public health and the food supply.
As part of MDARD’s regular inspection process, inspectors may take random samples of various food products to test for foodborne pathogens at the department’s Geagley Laboratory.
If a foodborne pathogen (e.g., Listeria, E. coli, Salmonella) is found, then MDARD will ensure the product is removed from commerce and work to address the source of the problem.
However, despite the partial shut-down, all USDA inspections — of meat, poultry, and eggs — will continue.