If you could write your own food regulatory act, how would it differ from the current regime?

It would simplify the current one, but it would use many of the same terms. So many of the things that Congress adds to a statute are totally redundant and irrelevant. I keep making the point in class that the food safety law in England of 1263 does not improve one iota upon the food safety law of 2011. So it could be simplified, but it’s something that’s a product of history and it would be incredibly difficult to try to simplify it. People would just go berserk and say no, we have a jurisprudence, let’s stick with it.

You’ve published over 125 articles on food and drug law and health policy and along with your co-authors, you’ve literally written the book on food and drug law. If someone forced you to take sabbatical and research a particular subject in food law, what would it be?

It would probably be historical. I love the history of food law, which if you’ll remember from class, goes back to ancient Sumer. It’s a subject that you could spend an entire lifetime studying and never probe every aspect of it. But if you’re talking about modern food law issues, the impact of the new food safety statute that has just been enacted would certainly be a subject to explore—both the depth of it and the breadth of it. How can the food industry realistically comply with the statute, which is extremely onerous and very demanding? I am concerned about small companies being able to comply with it. I’m equally concerned about exempting small companies. People can be made sick by small companies just as easily as large ones.

There are lots of issues there that I have not yet explored and it’s going to be very interesting. I’m going to give you just one example: records inspection. In the Bioterrorism Act of 2002 there was a slight increase in FDA’s power to get records but FDA had to show serious adverse effects or death. That’s pretty stringent standard. It’s opened up further in the new law, but it doesn’t allow a fishing expedition type of records inspection. So how far does it go, what does it mean, what do the words portend? It’s the type of thing I constantly ask you students in class all the time and you look at me and say, “I don’t know what that means!” and I say, “Nobody knows what it means!”

I was going to ask you which issues you think will be increasingly important in food law, but I think you just answered that question.

Clearly, the new statute. But in the long term there’s a question of whether there will be more and more user fees because of the need for FDA to have additional resources. Second, the burning issue in terms of food safety is pathogens. It has never been the safety of food additives. That’s a trivial issue and FDA has always known that. FDA has always been mystified that the public thinks food additives are a serious issue. The serious issue is pathogens. It’s everything from lettuce, to peanut butter, to fish, to fruit juice. One student a decade ago wrote an article entitled, “Death by Fruit Juice.” These are serious, serious questions because we’re talking life and death. How can you reduce pathogens in the food supply? Is there any legal component to it? What type of regulatory component? How can you control it? There’s salmonella on every farm in the United States and we’re never going to get rid of it. What does that mean? What should we do as a result? These are the types of issues that are of enormous importance.

Did you take any courses that touched on Food Law when you were at Harvard?

None. There were no courses that touched on food and drug law. To my knowledge, there was also no Health Law course. The only relevant course was Administrative Law and it was so highly theoretical as to be not very useful. Now there was one course, a very famous course, called the Legal Process. I took it from Al Sachs who later became Dean and it had a huge impact on me because it touched on, among other things, food and drug law. I learned later on that the reason why was because Al Sachs did food and drug law at Covington. So he included, as one example, the legislative history of the Factory Inspection amendments to the statute. But I certainly didn’t take the course for that reason.

Was your course the first food and drug law course at Harvard?

Yes; that I am certain of. Interestingly, at least five or six professors at Harvard started at Covington doing food and drug law work. But when they came to Harvard, they didn’t teach food and drug law. I used to say to David Shapiro, “Why don’t you teach Food and Drug Law?” but he was off doing Civil Procedure and Federal Courts and things like that. So it wasn’t taught here until I came to do it.

Did you come up with the idea of teaching Food and Drug Law or did someone at the school approach you?

I did not come up with the idea, I assure you. It was a confluence of events. First, I got to know Betsy Bartlett quite well and helped her found the Legal Action Center in New York City and she and I sort of worked together when I was doing pro bono work on the United States Crime Commission. So that was one factor. I got to know Chris Edley, who is now dean at Boalt Hall, but was for many years was an Administrative Law professor here and for many years we used to show up at conferences together. And then the chair of Harvard Law School Alumni Association was a food and drug lawyer and he kept after Bob Clark [then Dean of Harvard Law School] saying that I ought to be invited. So all of a sudden, they got in touch with me and asked me to do this.

There must be former students of yours working with you at Covington now.

Yes, there are students at Covington. Interestingly, as many that are in other fields as there doing food and drug law. And also, there are I am told, 15 graduates of the course now at the Food and Drug Administration.

Do you still keep in contact with any of them?

I do. I keep in contact with an amazing number of students and will frequently have lunch with students who are in Washington. Not just shortly after graduation, but when I come up here there’s a young woman who was in the first class that I taught whom I will occasionally have lunch with. And there’s a fabulous scholar, Ted Rugar, who was in the second class that I taught and on the law review. His paper was published in the law review and he’s now going to become the co-author of the casebook. One of the finest scholars I’ve ever worked with in my class is Glenn Cohen, who of course went to work in Washington after clerking then came back here to be a Petrie-Flom Fellow and is now an assistant professor and a brilliant, brilliant wonderful person I might add.

Is there anything else you would like to share with aspiring food and drug lawyers?

Well, they ought to come to Harvard Law School and take Food and Drug Law, that’s all I can share with them. Seriously, they ought to take a course in food and drug law and they should also do a couple of other things. First, they should go to short courses that are given by the Food and Drug Law Institute and other organizations that will delve down on particular issues, like the future of food standards, which we can only touch on in a general survey course. The second thing they have to do is to start scholarship. I have written at least one published article every year during my career. And you have to make it a priority. It’s easy to say I’m too busy. But as you, for example, in private practice, write memoranda, you’d be amazed by how many of those memoranda, with a little bit of thought, could be turned into an article. I’ve done that many times. That’s why we have the Electronic Book of Student Papers. It’s the first step in scholarship. And I think that’s incredibly important. It’s not just important for the career, it’s important for the development of the lawyer. Finally, I would add a third thing. Start getting accustomed to teaching yourself. In other words, volunteer to teach short courses. Volunteer if there’s a local law school with someone who, usually a private practitioner, who teaches food and drug law. Go meet them and offer to co-teach with them. This is the way you develop.

Has your involvement in food law changed the way you approach food at all?

The only decision I ever made—because I grew up in the diary industry I used to drink whole milk. Now I drink 2% milk. It’s not exactly a big difference. All food is intrinsically safe in a sense and all food can be fit in to a balanced diet. It reminds of Hippocrates, who advised people to eat everything in moderation. And he lived in 300 B.C. There hasn’t been a lot of new nutrition information in the last several centuries.

And finally, what did you have for dinner last night?

I had rainbow trout at Legal Seafood. I had a wonderful time with two students will be coming to Covington for the summer.

8/24/2012 02:12:00 pm

Valuable information and excellent design you got here! I would like to thank you for sharing your thoughts and time into the stuff posted!!

1/2/2013 08:18:07 pm

Not a great deal

1/27/2015 01:13:24 pm

Rajasthan tour packages from Kumar tourist taxi.df

9/17/2012 01:25:36 am

There some very impressive points in your blog. I must appreciate your excellent work. I find the blog post very interesting and moreover very informative. I am thinking to write a piece on related topic. Will definitely share it and waiting to read some more interesting blogs from you.

9/25/2012 06:03:17 am

I always like to read a quality content having accurate information regarding the subject and the same thing I found in this post. Nice work.

1/5/2013 01:04:36 am

Way cool, some valid points! I appreciate you making this article available, the rest of the site is also high quality. Have a fun

3/5/2013 08:39:05 pm

Thanks a lot for giving everyone an exceptionally marvellous chance to read in detail from this website. It is always very pleasing plus full of fun for me and my office friends to search the blog at the least thrice every week to read through the latest guides you have. Not to mention, we are always astounded with all the cool tips you serve. Some 3 tips on this page are undoubtedly the most suitable I’ve ever had.

6/9/2013 05:47:56 pm

Seriously, they ought to take a course in food and drug law and they should also do a couple of other things.

6/27/2013 12:19:49 pm

food and drug law and they should also do a couple of other things.

7/9/2013 09:16:19 pm

Our role in that terrible war such as the defeat of fascist tyranny on two continents along with the only use of nuclear weapons in warfare continues to shape the globe to this day.

7/18/2013 01:52:37 pm

Your blog provided us with valuable information to work with. Each & every tips of your post are awesome. Thanks a lot for sharing. Keep blogging.

7/21/2013 01:53:48 am

Thank you.

7/21/2013 03:27:48 pm

work with. Each & every tips of your post are awesome. Thanks a lot for sharing. Keep blogging.

8/6/2013 05:32:09 pm

yeah I agree with your points here. Thanks for sharing this useful information.

8/24/2013 11:16:34 pm

It’s not only very important to this vocation, it’s very important to this advancement in the legal professional.

9/4/2013 08:22:02 pm

That is really amazing. Thank author for it. it is rare articles. Thanks for putting in the effort to put it all together.Thank you for new issue, I really like this website.

9/10/2013 04:28:40 pm

I’m too busy. But as you, for example, in private practice, write memoranda, you’d be amazed by how many of those memoranda, with a little bit of thought, could be turned into an article. I’ve done that many times. That’s why we have the Electronic Book of Student Papers. It’s the first step in scholarship. And I think that’s incredibly important.

9/28/2013 01:16:10 am

My business is concerned about insignificant companies nature efficient to help notice by using it. I’m similarly lousy about exempting limited companies. Creatures could be built inefficient through indistinguishable companies just as effortlessly because broad versions.

9/28/2013 07:14:35 pm

Great article ...Thanks for your great information, the contents are quiet interesting.I will be waiting for your next post.


Our piece dramatists are more versed also skilled in endeavor APA, MLA, Harvard, Chicago, CBE, or Turbian manner so your article pleasure always be correctly formatted.

10/2/2013 05:33:14 pm

Recommended buffer zone is 5 meters as reckoned from both sides of the fault trace or from the edge of the deformation zone.

10/2/2013 07:28:56 pm

That’s a unimportant brood moreover FDA has always familiar that. FDA has always been mystified that the overt theorizes pabulum additives are a serious emanate. The serious distribute is pathogens. It’s all from lettuce, to peanut butter, to angle, to fruit fluid. Undivided pupil a decade since wrote an essay entitled, “Death by Fruit Fuel.

10/4/2013 04:28:26 pm

It’s a matter that you could use an all duration studying further never scrutinize all facet of it.

10/5/2013 07:05:21 pm

Never expect the perfect man, it's not because that u cannot find, but just becoz there is no perfect man. Do you think so?

10/8/2013 01:36:32 pm

I just encountered your blog website. I have no time to check out unlimited publications which’s why I like blogs. Thanks for this information! I wish, nevertheless, that you ’d be able to broaden even more about this soon. I’m sure there are whole lots who would be interested to learn more about it.

10/8/2013 04:24:43 pm

I agree with a great deal of points that you stated here. There is a great deal to be profited from articles as informative as this. Maintain the good work!

10/8/2013 07:19:49 pm

There is lot of information and they are very innovative and informative. I have read the article very well and it seems to me awesome.

10/10/2013 07:21:53 pm

anyone else experiencing issues with the images on this blog loading? I�m trying to find out if its a problem on my finish or if it�s the weblog. Any feed-back would be greatly appreciated.

10/20/2013 02:09:01 am

I've been wondering lately - why it seems like everybody has been looking in the same places for the inspiration and you give answers. Thank you for the insight!

10/20/2013 05:08:14 pm

It can seem challenging to find good topics for your Business Law Term paper. Some good ideas to consider are papers on topics such as regulation or employee relations. You could also write about contracts or tort law.

10/21/2013 08:14:57 am

I really like this post. It's cool, that author decided to write on this theme. Seems like he's broadminded person. I would like to read his another posts with great pleasure. It might be really incredible.

10/22/2013 04:22:07 pm

I have been deciding on a institutional move and this has helped me with one aspect.

10/27/2013 07:32:55 pm

Very interesting to read. I really love to read such a nice article. Thanks! keep rocking.

11/7/2013 10:18:04 am

I want to share my friend. Let them to appreciate! I think they will like to see this article.

11/7/2013 10:19:44 am

Super!good acticle for me,so interested in the topic,wait for your next post.

11/7/2013 10:22:50 am

This blog has unique insights, let a person feel at first sight is great,

12/19/2013 02:33:04 pm

Others can work for you, but can not feel for you. Walk on our own way in life, success rely on themselves to win. God helps those who help themselves, successful self-help.
Michael Kors Outlet

12/19/2013 02:35:19 pm

looking forward to read more.In your life, there will at least one time that you forget yourself forsomeone, asking for no result, no company, no ownership nor love. Justask for meeting
you in my most beautiful years.
Ray Ban Outlet

12/19/2013 02:38:20 pm

Super!It is not easy to meet each other in such a big world.looking forward to read more.
Beats Outlet Store

3/31/2014 04:57:09 pm

While modern sensibility gravitates <a href="http://www.greenladyflowers.us">Quality Home Interior Design</a> towards the neutrals of beige and beige, <a href="http://www.wirelessmusic.biz">Interior Designs</a> we seem to have forgotten the neutrals of "the lost generation": black and white. <a href="http://www.milesmagazine.us">Best Home Decoration</a> Gertrude Stein may have had other colors in mind in coining the phrase, <a href="http://www.overheadgaragedoors.us">Colourful Interior Design</a> but it recalls her zeitgeist and the Cole Porter era. <a href="http://www.overheadgaragedoor.us">Home Decor Tips</a> With the burgeoning of photography, images are cast in black and white, suggesting the complexity and uncertainty of the Great War while alluding to the security of a black and white world. These were the neutrals of that time: black and white. Of course, we know that when thrown together, they are anything but. <a href="http://www.ma-group.us">Home Decoration</a> The product of their marriage is color, the grays of reality with its transcending ambiguity.

4/8/2014 04:46:12 pm

Phobias are very painful and can greatly limit your <a href="http://www.mellusyne.com">Dental Advise</a> life as you try to avoid the thing you're afraid of--be it spiders or snakes, <a href="http://www.southfloridafoodtruckcourt.com">Child Dental Care</a> flying in airplanes, lightning storms, <a href="http://www.jerryghionisgallery.net">Dental Care</a> or speaking in public. The kinds of phobias people have are limitless. <a href="http://www.orthodoxiyaradio.com">Dentist Care</a> People often try various therapies to overcome their phobias--often without success. EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) is a method that often <a href="http://vietnamtraveltips.org">Teeth Care</a> has success in overcoming phobias in a relatively short time. <a href="http://www.qrmanufacturing.com">Healthy family</a> This article describes the source of phobias and explains EFT.

11/29/2018 11:09:48 am

your article has really peaked my interest.


Leave a Reply.