Donald Trump has called for a complete freeze on food and beverages from the start of the New Year, but said he’s open to considering changes as he works to keep Americans safe.
The Republican presidential hopeful spoke with MSNBC’s Chris Matthews in an interview airing Sunday morning, saying he was “open to having a freeze” on food items such as frozen foods, but did not specify what he would do to limit what foods are frozen.
He also said he would “probably” have to revisit a ban on some foods, though he did not explain what that might entail.
“I’m not saying it’s all that hard,” Trump said, “but I’ll see what happens.”
Asked about his policy on frozen meat and dairy products, Trump said he is “open” to changes.
“There are a lot of things I’d like to see, and I’m open to all of that,” Trump told Matthews.
“But right now, I think we’re safe, and we have to be.
I think there’s no reason for anybody to feel like they’re getting sick because they have a frozen hamburger.
He also told Matthews that “it’s not the time of year when you have a lot on the table” for the holidays, but that “we’re in the middle of the season.”
Asked whether the country should be concerned about an increased incidence of foodborne illnesses, Trump replied, “I think there are a bunch of things that can happen.”
“But I would say it’s not time to start worrying about it.
We’ve done a great job, but we’re not going to do anything that we don’t have to.”
When asked about Trump’s call for a total freeze, Matthews noted that the candidate has said that he supports a “food freeze.”
“There’s no such thing as a food freeze,” Trump responded.
“I’m open, and you’re welcome to talk to me about it, but I’m not a food guy.”
“I think it would be a great idea,” he continued.
“It would be an opportunity for us to start looking at the things that we do that can help save lives.
I’m talking about all of the things.
I don’t know if it would help me.
But it would make a big difference.”
In February, Trump tweeted that he would propose a “temporary” food freeze on a “big, fat, beautiful list.”
A full freeze would require Trump to release additional information about what he might consider a health risk.
In an interview with The Associated Press earlier this month, Trump expressed his openness to a freeze.
“When you get into a situation like this, you really don’t want to be giving up anything,” Trump explained.
“If I say something, it’s a very big deal.
You might lose something, but it’s like, okay, I got the information.
It’s a big deal.”
Trump has repeatedly called for Americans to get their blood pressure checked before the New Years break.
The presumptive Republican nominee has also advocated a nationwide ban on “sugar-free” sodas and other sugar-sweetened drinks.
Trump also called for food-related safety improvements during a rally in Iowa on Saturday, saying “there is no reason to be eating foods that aren’t frozen.”
“You have to put things back in the refrigerator, right?””
You have to put things back in the refrigerator, right?”