The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (USDA) has proposed two new fees—a food import user fee and a food facility and inspection fee—that the agency says will “enhance the safety protections for imported food and feed” as well as support “new and improved activities required by the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) to modernize FDA’s inspection system.” According to FDA, programs to support FSMA are scheduled to cost $295 million next year and will apparently be 94-percent funded by user fees.

“These investments will provide industry with consistent and transparent food and feed safety guidance to assure the safety of America’s food and feed supply,” the agency asserts in its budget proposal. FDA has also proposed new user fees to support its cosmetic and food contact substance notification programs.

In a statement releasing the budget, FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg said, “These are tight budget times, and the FDA budget request reflects this reality. Our budget increases are targeted to strategic areas that will benefit patients and consumers and overall strengthen our economy. Through the good work of the FDA, Americans will receive life-saving medicines approved as fast as or faster than anywhere in the world, confidence in the medical products they rely on daily, and a food supply that is among the safest in the world.” See FDA News Release, April 10, 2013.