Robert I. Merker
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- "I supervise a group of 7 dedicated professionals at the Food and Drug Administration in College Park, Maryland. I am also the Lead Microbiology Review Scientist in FDA's Office of Food Additive Safety."
From July 2007 until July 2010, he was also the Supervisory Consumer Safety Officer in the Division of Petition Review at the Food and Drug Administration.
According to a 2005 bio:
- "Dr. Merker received his bachelors degree in Microbiology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Ph.D. in Microbiology from the University of California, Davis. After several years of postdoctoral studies at the University of British Columbia and University of California, Davis, he came to the Food and Drug Administration as a research microbiologist in 1991, where he did research on the outer surface of Listeria monocytogenes, acid tolerance in Yersinia enterocolitica, and a project on the food safety of apple cider production. In 2000, he became a Consumer Safety Officer in the Office of Premarket Approval, which became the Office of Food Additive Safety in June, 2001. Dr. Merker specializes in issues relating to the safety of microbially derived food ingredients and microbes used as food ingredients. Dr. Merker participated in the Working Group for the development of a Codex Alimentarius Guideline for the Conduct of Food Safety Assessment of Foods Produced Using Recombinant-DNA Microorganisms. Dr. Merker has worked on a variety of Biotechnology-related issues for FDA, and is currently a member of an interagency task team has developed and maintains a joint Internet site for government information about regulation of the products of modern biotechnology found at http://usbiotechreg.nbii.gov."