The US Food and Drug Administration: A Cornerstone of America’s Economic Future

By:  Alliance for a Stronger FDA, March 2011

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration: A Cornerstone of America’s Economic Future was prepared by the Alliance for a Stronger FDA to assist policymakers in understanding the FDA’s role in the nation’s economy. FDA is a pre-eminent public health agency that assures that our food supply is safe and that drugs and medical devices are safe and effective. Its primary mission is to serve and protect the American people. In addition to its public health role, the agency and the industries it regulates have a significant, positive role in our nation’s economy and in stimulating economic growth and job creation.

Some of the highlights of the FDA’s contribution to the United States and the global economy, which are discussed in greater detail in this paper, are:

  • FDA-regulated industries account for nearly 25 percent of consumer spending in the United States
  • The bioscience industry, which depends on FDA for regulation of its products, directly employed 1.42 million people in the United States in 2008 and generated an additional 8 million related jobs
  • The FDA oversees approximately 167,000 registered domestic food establishments, as well as monitoring an additional 254,000 sites overseas involved in the production and processing of the food Americans eat
  • FDA plays a critical role in protecting the United States against agro-terrorism and bio-terrorism.

Read the full report