The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Congressional House Energy and Commerce Committee are considering charging farms and food processing plants $1,000 to cover the cost of more thorough inspections of food preparation and records. Recent nationwide outbreaks and recalls linked to foods regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, including from peanut butter and spinach, have pushed this change. There have been at least 1,200 illnesses and nine deaths from two outbreaks associated with peanut butter alone, including the latest scare last winter that was traced to a processor in Georgia. Illnesses were reported in at least 46 states. FDA regulates 80 percent of the food sold in the U.S. and says they are unable to keep up, hence the request for money to support the improvements. Small farms will be hit hardest by the $1,000 fee, as inspections have been free in the past.