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FDA Commissioner Robert Califf Says Effectively Managing “Misinformation” Is an Overarching Priority

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One of the “recruits” in the “war on misinformation” that has been flaring up this election year thanks to those currently in office, is the US Food and Drug Administration Agency (FDA).

Not merely that, but FDA Commissioner Robert Califf has been heard saying that “managing misinformation” is one of the agency’s “overarching priorities.”

The FDA’s intent is to keep narratives and messaging around things like additives used by the food industry, CBD, and kratom – but also Covid – under control. Or as the agency’s representatives would put it, safe from “misinformation.”

A webinar was recently organized by the Alliance for a Stronger FDA that heard officials’ musings on these issues, starting innocuously enough by stating that CBD and similar substances do not exactly live up to the standard in place for other “supplements” and food and that consumers need to be better informed about any side effects.

FDA wants to “work with Congress” on this, and FDA Deputy Commissioner Kimberlee Trzeciak was repeatedly “thinking of the children” while justifying the need for this approach. Trzeciak also made sure to reiterate again and again that FDA’s decisions are strictly “science-based” – while any problems must stem from insufficient quality of communication.

Some reports about the webinar are using this concern about regulation and safety of CBD etc., as a basis to segue into the problem of “misinformation” and what the FDA thinks and does about that.

Namely, Commissioner Robert Califf told a previous webinar hosted by the same organization that people are “very suspicious of government and concerned about overreach.”

But his concern doesn’t seem to be about the root of why that may be; instead, it’s taken for granted – or Califf would like it to be – that the problem lies in not making “scientific truth or reliable information” more readily available.

Califf is also worried about the developments in his corner of the “misinformation battlefield” – namely, the FDA chief shared, “I still do not think we are winning the misinformation battle.”

And for the FDA, that battle has been much broader than food and supplement safety – it has also included messaging around Covid.

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