Approved by the Georgia House Tuesday—a bill to toughen food safety legislation that moved through 2009’s General Assembly session.
It was sparked by the salmonella outbreak linked to a south Georgia peanut processing plant, sickening hundreds nationwide and tied to the deaths of at least nine people.
The House action would make it a felony to knowingly distribute a tainted food product. Penalties would be up to 20 years in prison and a 20-thousand dollar fine.
The law passed last year mandates food plants to alert state inspectors within 24 hours if tests show product is tainted. This new bill makes failure to do so a misdemeanor.