Significant Dates in U.S. Food and Drug Law History

  • Drug Importation Act

    Drug Importation Act passed by Congress requires U.S. Customs Service inspection to stop entry of adulterated drugs from overseas.
  • Tea Importation Act

    Tea Importation Act passed, providing for Customs inspection of all tea entering U.S. ports, at the expense of the importers.
  • Biologics Control Act

    The Biologics Control Act is passed to ensure purity and safety of serums, vaccines, and similar products used to prevent or treat diseases in humans.
  • Food and Drugs Act

    The original Food and Drugs Act is passed by Congress on June 30 and signed by President Theodore Roosevelt. It prohibits interstate commerce in misbranded and adulterated foods, drinks and drugs
  • Meat Inspection Act

    The Meat Inspection Act is passed the same day. Shocking disclosures of insanitary conditions in meat-packing plants, the use of poisonous preservatives and dyes in foods, and cure-all claims for worthless and dangerous patent medicines were the major problems leading to the enactment of these laws.
  • Harrison Narcotic Act

    The Harrison Narcotic Act requires prescriptions for products exceeding the allowable limit of narcotics and mandates increased record-keeping for physicians and pharmacists who dispense narcotics
  • McNary-Mapes Admendment

    McNary-Mapes Amendment authorizes FDA standards of quality and fill-of-container for canned food, excluding meat and milk products.
  • The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic (FDC) Act of 1938

    The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic (FDC) Act of 1938 is passed by Congress, containing new provisions: Extending control to cosmetics and therapeutic devices.
    Requiring new drugs to be shown safe before marketing-starting a new system of drug regulation.
    Eliminating the Sherley Amendment requirement to prove intent to defraud in drug misbranding cases.
    Providing that safe tolerances be set for unavoidable poisonous substances.
    Authorizing standards of identity, quality, and fill-of-contain
  • Public Health Service Act

    Public Health Service Act is passed, covering a broad spectrum of health concerns, including regulation of biological products and control of communicable diseases.
  • Federal Hazardous Substances Labeling Act

    Federal Hazardous Substances Labeling Act, enforced by FDA, requires prominent label warnings on hazardous household chemical products.
  • Fair Packaging and Labeling Act

    Fair Packaging and Labeling Act requires all consumer products in interstate commerce to be honestly and informatively labeled, with FDA enforcing provisions on foods, drugs, cosmetics, and medical devices.
  • The Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act

    The Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act replaces previous laws and categorizes drugs based on abuse and addiction potential compared to their therapeutic value.