IFT Welcome Letter to President Obama

January 22, 2009



President Barack H. Obama
Obama Transition Team
451 6th St. NW
Washington, DC 20004
Dear Mr. President:

Founded in 1939, the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) is a not-for-profit professional scientific society with over 20,000 members working in academia, government and industry to advance the science of food. On a global scale, IFT's longrange vision is a safe and abundant food supply contributing to healthier people everywhere. First and foremost, IFT congratulates you on your recent election to the presidency of the United States of America. We commend your pledge to enhance the U.S. food system and strengthen the safety of the U.S. food supply. As in your “Improving Food-borne Illness Surveillance and Response Act of 2008,” IFT has also advocated for increased state and federal surveillance and response efforts. You may find our enclosed comments on FDA’s Food Protection Plan of interest. In addition, we share a common commitment in defending the nation’s food supply. For nearly ten years, IFT has conducted work on food protection, including food safety and defense, via contract with the FDA. IFT applauds the important commitment made throughout your campaign to advance science, technology and innovation. IFT encourages the growth of the next generation of scientists and supports K-12 science-based education, with a special focus on the study of food science through our partnership with Discovery Education (www.discoveryschool.com/foodscience). IFT strongly believes in fostering innovation via public-private partnerships showcased in our highly successful International Food Nanoscience Conference, which has advanced a comprehensive initiative in food
nanoscience since first held in 2006.

IFT is ready to serve you and your administration as an independent scientific resource. We welcome opportunities to work with your team on food safety, food defense and other food science and technology-related issues as they arise. We trust that members of your team will feel free to contact Barbara Byrd Keenan, Executive Vice President [bbkeenan@ift.org; 312-782-8424], if we may be of assistance in pursuit of our common commitments to food protection and science education.


Sheri Schellhaass, Ph.D.