FDA commissioner Gottlieb to step down

U.S. Food and Drug Administration commissioner Scott Gottlieb resigned today.

In a statement on FDA’s Twitter account, Gottlieb said he will leave the administration next month to spend more time with his family.

Along with the Centers for Disease Control, FDA advised U.S. consumers in the days before Thanksgiving to stop eating romaine lettuce and for U.S. grocery stores and restaurants to stop serving romaine during an E. coli outbreak.

Produce industry members were frustrated at the time, saying they weren’t given enough warning for such a broad advisory.

“I’ll depart knowing that the FDA is strong, its people outstanding, and its mission well recognized and deeply respected across the government, and indeed, across the world,” Gottlieb said in the statement.

Both Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and President Donald Trump praised Gottlieb on twitter for his work over the past two years he was commissioner.

“I’m immensely grateful for the opportunity to help lead this wonderful agency, for the support of my colleagues, for the public health goals we advanced together, and the strong support of @SecAzar and @realDonaldTrump – This has been a wonderful journey and parting is very hard,” he wrote on Twitter.

Greg Johnson is Director of Media Development for Blue Book Services