For the fourth time in its fifty-two year history, a jury of leading environmental health officials and public health sanitarians has decided not to select a recipient for the 2007 Samuel J. Crumbine Consumer Protection Award.

The Crumbine Award, named for one of the most renowned public health sanitarians, is usually presented each year to a local public health unit that demonstrates excellence in food protection. Crumbine winners serve as models for other public health and safety programs across the nation. Among environmental and public health circles, the Crumbine Award is the most prestigious recognition that a public health unit can receive.

“The jury was faced with a very difficult decision this year,” said Tony Hiller, senior consumer health specialist at the Fort Worth Public Health Department, Consumer Health Division, and chair of the 2007 Crumbine Jury. “We only received one application this year and felt that while it was a good program, it did not meet – or exceed – the four key criteria required of a Crumbine Award winner. We concluded that the integrity of the award would be better served if no recipient was chosen this year.”

Trevor Hayes, executive director of the Conference for Food Protection and sponsor of the Crumbine Award explained that the lone application was not the problem – applications are not judged against each other but against the criteria. “For several years, the number of applications has decreased. We will take this opportunity to make changes to the criteria and increase our outreach to local public health units.”