Pure Food and Drug Act - 1906



Supported by the Department of Agriculture's chief Chemist Harvey W. Wiley, the Food and Drugs Act was created to protect consumers from potentially dangerous drugs and food. The act required sufficient that the consumer was given warning about the toxic or addictive nature of certain drugs or foods.

Toxicological Perspective

The Pure Food and Drugs Act is a federal law that requires federal inspection of meat products and forbade the manufacture, sale, or transportation of adulterated food products. The act was spurred on by authors Upton Sinclair and Samuel Hopkins Adams, researcher Harvey W. Wiley and President Theodore Roosevelt.

Sinclair's novel The Jungle, which chronicled the abysmal conditions in Chicago's meat packing industry, spurred Roosevelt to send federal investigator to work in the plants for a few weeks to obtain first-hand evidence of the atrocities. Despite a thorough cleansing by the meat packers upon hearing the regulators would be coming, the grounds and working conditions were still unsanitary and unprofessional.

The Secretary of Agriculture was ordered to inspect all meat and turn away those found unfit for human consumption.


The Pure Food and Drugs Act - Wikipedia