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FDA Caves to Pressure, Withdraws Oyster Ban

Following a massive outcry by pretty much everyone remotely involved in the Gulf Coast oyster industry—most notably New Orleans restaurateurs to local politicians—the FDA has succumbed to the mounting pressure and "indefinitely delayed" its proposed ban on the sale of raw oysters from the Gulf Coast during warm months. Under the would-be law, all Gulf oysters would have to be processed somehow (cooked, frozen, etc.) to kill evil bacteria. But for now, restaurateurs and oyster industry people can rest easy.

Previously, the FDA wanted to enact the ban in order to prevent common (and possibly deadly) bacteria-related illnesses, prompting a veritable shitstorm of outcry from oyster farmers, including some that equated the new guidelines to a "nuclear bomb" on the industry. The FDA maintains that there's a need to "further examine" the entire warm weather oyster process, but won't pursue the unilateral action, at least for now.
· Food Agency Delays Ban on Oysters After Outcry [NYT]
· Food Fights [Eater National]
[Photo: Flickr]