REVIEW – Update of FDA’s ‘Economically Motivated Adulteration (Food Fraud)’ Webpage

New FDA content was published on While news outlets presented this as a new report and a food fraud warning, it was just a new list of content. That said, the new list of resources is VERY valuable for food fraud prevention.

Yesterday, I noticed several news alerts of what was being insinuated as a ‘new’ FDA warning about food fraud. As it ends up, only one news article was created but it was picked up in syndication on the same day to ten news outlets (I searched on a long section of text and then reviewed if that matched the entire article). I didn’t see any new information, and actually, some of the content seemed to be very familiar.

The news article had a link to the FDA report that was the same as is posted on FDA’s website, which is “Call the FDA consumer complaint coordinator for your state.”

I dug deeper to try to find the primary source report from FDA. The news article did not have a link or mention of the report title, which made me curious and maybe a bit suspicious that this was not ‘new’ and not an actual ‘warning.’

To track the primary source, I searched the FDA quotes in the news article. The primary source was the general informational webpage on for the topic of ‘Economically Motivated Adulteration (Food Fraud).’

FDA’s Informational Webpage for ‘Economically Motivated Adulteration (Food Fraud)’

When I went to the primary source on the FDA website, I noticed that the “Content current as of” date was recent: “01/31/2023” – that new date was just 14 days ago. The posting of a new date indicated that there had been an update. (

The ‘newsworthy’ trigger for a journalist might have been an internet keyword search alert of new content. As it ended up, this was NOT a new report and NOT a new warning. This was just an update of a general informational webpage with updated links.

I had a copy of the text of that webpage from back in April 2022, which I compared with the January 2023 version.

Changes/New Information:

  • Content: Link to the recent honey collection analysis (see our previous blog post)
    • Comment: This is just an update to the general informational webpage of previously announced and published FDA information.
      • “Reports”
      • “FY21/22 Sample Collection and Analysis of Imported Honey for Economically Motivated Adulteration”
  • Content: A new section expanded the resources to include research publications.
    • Comment: This is a great addition that helps food fraud researchers to find and understand the FDA research activity and focus quickly. (See below for a review of this content)
      • “Research Publications”
      • “Please go to our FDA Research Publications on Food Fraud page to see what our scientists have published on economically motivated adulteration in food.”
  • Content: The final new section expanded the resources to include additional resources.
    • Comment: It is very helpful that FDA has identified the entities and resources that FDA feels are the most significant for the application to food fraud prevention:
      • “Additional Resources”
      • CBP’s Priority Trade Issue: Import Safety
      • CBP’s Country of Origin Marking
      • NOAA’s Seafood Fraud and Office of Law Enforcement
      • USDA’s Country of Original Labeling (COOL)
      • USDA’s Methods and Application of Food Composition Laboratory
      • The EU Food Fraud Network (See link to our previous blog post)
      • The United Kingdom’s Food Crime (See link to our previous blog post)
      • Canada’s Food Fraud webpage
      • Congressional Research Service’s 2014 report on Food Fraud and “Economically Motivated Adulteration” of Food and Food Ingredients (See link to our previous blog post)

It’s ALWAYS good to know what topics or collaborations are being emphasized by government agencies.

FDA’s Economically Motivated Adulteration (Food Fraud) Research Publications

The FDA EMA/FF webpage had a link to a summary of FDA research reports. I included three of the thirty-three reports that were listed. These research projects were focused on authenticity test methods. (TABLE)

It’s ALWAYS good to know what research and investigations are conducted by government agencies.

FoodOlive oilAuthenticity Assessment of Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Evaluation of Desmethylsterols and Triterpene DialcoholsExternal Link DisclaimerJournal of the American Oil Chemists’ SocietySrigley, CT, Oles CJ, Kia ARF, Mossoba MM2016 Feb
Melamine in foodMilk powderFirst use of handheld Raman spectroscopic devices and on-board chemometric analysis for the detection of milk powder adulterationExternal Link DisclaimerFood ControlKarunathilaka SR, Yakes BJ, He K, Brückner L, Mossoba MM2018 Oct
Dietary supplementsBitter orangeAnalysis of bitter orange dietary supplements for natural and synthetic phenethylamines by LC-MS/MSExternal Link DisclaimerDrug Testing & AnalysisPawar RS, Sagi S, Leontyev D2020 Sept
Table 1: FDA list of Food Fraud Related Research Publications (selected)

Takeaway Points

  • It is always wise to review news alerts of agency warnings or updates – even if there are no urgent matters, it is good to double-check, and you might find some new information.
  • In this case, there was no new warning or incident – there was some further valuable information that provides more insight into the focus and priority-setting of a government agency.
  • If you’ve been following our food fraud updates and blog posts, then you’ve already been aware of the new items.
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