A major evolution in modern societies is the widespread use of food produced and often preserved in areas remote from the consumer. Because consumers do not know how the food was handled, they do not know if it is safe to eat. (In ancient times, slaves and animals were sometimes compelled by their masters to eat food of questioned safety before it was eaten by their masters.) Thus, as the entire population presently requires protection, it is a proper government function to determine the wholesomeness and purity of foods and to protect the consumer against economic fraud as well as health hazard. Yet government seldom assumes this responsibility spontaneously, and protective regulatory legislation is passed and enforced only after consumer-oriented persons or groups stimulate broad public support for government action.
KeywordsFederal Trade Commission Meat Inspection Foodborne Illness Freeze Food Internal Revenue Service
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