Though FDA can trace its origins back to the creation of the Agricultural Division in the Patent Office in 1848, its origins as a federal consumer protection agency began with the passage of the 1906 Pure Food and Drugs Act. This law was the culmination of about 100 bills over a quarter-century that aimed to rein in long-standing, serious abuses in the consumer product marketplace.
Federal public health protection was vigorously advocated by Harvey Washington Wiley, who at the time was chief chemist of the Bureau of Chemistry of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, FDA’s predecessor. The 1906 Act was passed thanks to his efforts and in response to the public outrage at the shockingly unhygienic conditions in the Chicago stockyards that were described in Upton Sinclair’s book “The Jungle."
Eventually, the position of chief chemist of the Bureau of Chemistry evolved into that of the commissioner of food and drugs.
- What is FDA's budget and what is its impact?
- How can I find out the status of my FOIA request?
- What does FDA regulate?
- What is FDA Basics for Industry?
- How did the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act come about?
- How do I find the latest information on the Web site? How do I sign up for e-mails and alerts?
- What is a docket? How do I submit comments to a docket? How do I find comments submitted to a docket?
- Can I buy medical products online? How do I know they're safe?
- FDA's MedWatch Program: Voluntarily Reporting Problems to the FDA
- What non-government websites does FDA recommend?
- What other government-supported websites does FDA recommend as reliable sources for health-related information?
- Where should I go to find consumer information on www.FDA.gov?
- FDA Basics Webinar: FDA Office of Minority Health - Steps to Address Health Disparities
- How do I report a problem with an FDA-regulated product?
- Can I tell if FDA has approved a product by looking at the label?
- FDA MedWatch Webinar
- FDA Webinar on Foreign Inspections
- How is a potential advisory committee member screened for conflicts of interests?
- What is a financial conflict of interest waiver?
- How does an individual become a member of an FDA advisory committee?
- What is a conflict of interest?
- What are the qualifications of a scientific member of an advisory committee?
- What is an FDA Advisory Committee?
- When and why was FDA formed?
- How many people are employed by FDA and in what areas do they work?