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The FDA Grand Rounds is an educational presentation that is webcast monthly to highlight cutting-edge research underway across the Agency and its impact on protecting and advancing public health. Each session features an FDA scientist presenting on a key public health challenge and how FDA is applying science to its regulatory activities. The 45-minute educational presentation is followed by questions from the audience. You can also view the presentation under Past Grand Rounds following the live webcast. #FDAGrandRounds.

Closer to Zero

Thursday, December 9, 2021
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. EST


About the Speaker

Conrad Choiniere, PhD
Office of Analytics and Outreach(OAO)
Center for Food Safety and Nutrition (CFSAN)

Conrad Choiniere, PhD, is the Director of the Office of Analytics and Outreach at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN). Dr. Choiniere provides executive leadership for a broad portfolio of scientific and regulatory functions including risk and decision analysis, social and behavioral sciences, epidemiology, biostatistics and informatics, education and outreach, and food defense. Dr. Choiniere currently co-leads a core element of FDA’s New Era of Smarter Food Safety focused on fostering and supporting Food Safety Culture across the food system. He also chairs the FDA’s Toxic Elements Working Group which prioritizes the agency’s efforts to reduce exposures to lead, arsenic, and other heavy metals from foods to the greatest extent feasible. Dr. Choiniere has a PhD in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of Maryland and a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Johns Hopkins University.

About the Presentation

The FDA’s Closer to Zero initiative is the agency’s action plan for reducing exposure to toxic elements, including lead, arsenic, cadmium, and mercury, in foods for babies and young children. Closer to Zero utilizes a multi-phase, science-based, iterative approach for achieving continual improvements over time, laying out plans to further reduce the levels of toxic elements in foods. The plan includes advancing research, the evaluation of changes in dietary exposures to toxic elements, setting action levels, encouraging adoption of best practices by industry, increasing targeted compliance and enforcement activities, and monitoring progress of levels over time.


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