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Food industry group to propose safety rules: report

Elderly German Christine Evelt, 78, who is visually impaired, shops for groceries at her local store in Germany, April 11, 2006. The Grocery Manufacturers Association, the industry's largest trade group, plans to unveil on Tuesday a proposal to increase U.S. federal oversight of imported food and ingredients, the Wall Street Journal reported in its online edition on Monday. REUTERS/Kirsten Neumann

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Grocery Manufacturers Association, the industry’s largest trade group, plans to unveil on Tuesday a proposal to increase U.S. federal oversight of imported food and ingredients, the Wall Street Journal reported in its online edition on Monday.

The system would require the industry to adopt food-safety measures such as product tests and checks on foreign suppliers, the report said.

The trade group is also lobbying Congress for more funds for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and it is working with federal and state officials and other groups toward a model regulation for farms and packing houses, the report said.

“It’s in our interest to have a strong FDA,” the Journal quoted GMA President Cal Dooley as saying. “We need to have consumer confidence in the food products.”

The association represents companies such as Kraft Foods Inc and Coca-Cola Co as well as smaller, family-owned companies, the report said.

The GMA could not immediately be reached for comment.

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