The Jan. 5 front-page article “Sweeping rules for food are released” included a 2010 quote from Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) that the $1.4 billion cost of the food safety bill was not justified to prevent food-related illness. The same article noted that 48 million Americans are sickened each year from contaminated food and 3,000 die.

If only one-third of the illnesses could be prevented, the cost of prevention per person would be $87.50, far less than the associated medical costs and lost productivity. This number doesn’t take into account the heartache caused by needless deaths.

The old adage is true: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

John DesMarteau, Washington