Commissioner of Food and Drugs Dr. Andrew C. von Eschenbach announced the creation of the position of Assistant Commissioner for Food Protection to provide advice and counsel to the Commissioner on strategic and substantive food safety and food defense matters.
David Acheson, M.D., F.R.C.P. will be assigned to this new senior leadership role.
Currently, Dr. Acheson serves as chief medical officer and director of the Office of Food Defense, Communication and Emergency Response at the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN).
In his new role, Dr. Acheson will work with individual FDA product centers, as well as the Office of Regulatory Affairs to coordinate FDA's food safety and defense assignments and commitments. In addition, Dr. Acheson will serve as the commissioner's direct liaison to the Department of Health and Human Services, of which FDA is a part, and to other U.S. departments and agencies on food safety and food defense related inter-agency initiatives.
One of Dr. Acheson's first projects will be the development of an agency-wide, visionary strategy for food safety and defense. The strategy will identify and characterize changes in the global food safety and defense system, and identify current and future challenges and opportunities. It will also name potential barriers, gaps, and most critical needs in a food safety and defense system. The strategy will serve as the framework in helping the agency prioritize and address food safety and defense challenges.