Entries tagged with: Food Safety

FDA extends some FSMA compliance dates, releases guidance

FDA has extended some of the compliance deadlines for parts of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and has issued draft guidance for a key portion of the law, the Produce Safety Rule. The changes affect compliance dates for parts of the current good manufacturing practices and preventive controls rules for human and animal food, the Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP) and the Produce Safety Rule. The changes allow more time for manufacturers to meet…  » Read more

United Fresh event to feature DOJ session

A workshop at this year’s United Fresh Washington Conference will focus on the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) approach to criminal investigations and prosecution enforcing laws under the Food, Drugs and Cosmetic Act (FD&C). Jeffrey Steger, assistant director in the Consumer Protection Branch, U.S. DOJ, will discuss the department’s approach to enforcement. Steger will be joined by attorney Doug Fellman, partner, Hogan Lovells US LLP, who will translate what that means for the fresh produce industry. “The Food Police Are Coming – Liability…  » Read more

FSMA updates food facility registration

The FDA today finalized a rule as part of the implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) to improve the accuracy of the food facility registration database. The Amendments to Registration of Food Facilities final rule updates FDA’s food facility registration requirements by requiring additional registration information that will improve the accuracy of the food facility registration database for facilities both in the United States and abroad, FDA said. This final rule will support the FDA’s efforts to act quickly…  » Read more

Senate approves GMO labeling bill

By a vote of 63-30 the Senate voted to approve S.764, the Roberts-Stabenow genetically modified organism (GMO) legislation. The legislation establishes federal preemption for labeling foods that contain GMO ingredients and provides the option of labeling those foods with either an on-package disclosure, a symbol to be developed by USDA or an electronic label. “Today is a victory for farmers, ranchers, sound science, and anyone who eats on a budget. Getting to an agreement wasn’t…  » Read more

United Fresh hires new Food Safety & Technology VP

United Fresh Produce Association has named Jennifer McEntire, Ph.D., as its new vice president of Food Safety & Technology. She succeeds David Gombas, who retired from the association June 1 after 11 years leading its food safety program. Most recently, McEntire served as vice president for Science Operations at the Grocery Manufacturers Association. She previously was chief science officer at The Acheson Group. McEntire was previously senior staff scientist at the Institute of Food Technologists, where…  » Read more

Food Safety Conference set for July 13

Food Safety Net Services (FSNS) and Food Safety Net Services Certification and Audit (FSNS C&A) will host the FSNS Food Safety Conference in Amarillo, Texas on Wednesday, July 13. A tour and reception of the FSNS Amarillo Laboratory will follow after the conference along with a book signing by Temple Grandin. The conference is open to the public at no charge, and will cover the latest developments in food safety. The agenda includes the following topics:…  » Read more

Hydraulic fracturing spills on farms need scrutiny

Hydraulic fracturing, a widely used method for extracting oil and gas from otherwise impenetrable shale and rock formations, involves not only underground injections composed mostly of water, but also a mixture of chemical additives. These chemicals range from toxic biocides and surfactants, to corrosion inhibitors and slicking agents, and many are also used by other industries. A Colorado State University research team desired a deeper understanding of the fate of these chemicals when they are…  » Read more

New FSMA final rule issued

The FDA has finalized a new food safety rule under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that will help to prevent wide-scale public health harm by requiring companies in the United States and abroad to take steps to prevent intentional adulteration of the food supply. A webinar is planned for June 21 to present key pieces of theMitigation Strategies to Protect Food Against Intentional Adulteration final rule. Under the final rule, both domestic and foreign food facilities,…  » Read more

DeltaTrak introduces FlashLink USB data loggers

DeltaTrak, a provider of cold chain management, food safety and environmental monitoring solutions, has released its new FlashLink USB PDF Reusable Data Loggers. Temperature verification is an important part of effective facility, equipment and process management. DeltaTrak’s new line of reusable loggers are designed to be cost effective solutions for accurately monitoring and recording temperature conditions in cold storage warehouses, walk-in coolers, freezers, processing, packing and staging areas. They provide documentation required for HACCP, FDA,…  » Read more

FDA hosting public meetings on FSMA implementation

The FDA will host three one-day public meetings, entitled “FDA Food Safety Modernization Act: Focus on Strategic Implementation of Prevention-Oriented Import Safety Programs.” The public meetings will be held in different regions throughout the U.S. to provide importers and other interested persons an opportunity to have an in-depth discussion on the implementation of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) import safety programs. The public meetings scheduled will take place: June 7, 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. The Hilton Costa…  » Read more

Rutgers hosts FSMA training in preventive controls

The Rutgers Food Innovation Center (FIC) has scheduled training in Preventive Controls for Human Food (PCHF) at the Kearny Point Industrial Park on June 8-10. The course includes 20 hours of classroom instruction over two and a half days. Participants will earn an official Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance (FSPCA) certificate for becoming an FDA-recognized “Preventive Controls Qualified Individual” (PCQI) with the credentials for creating a FDA Food Safety Plan with hazard analysis and risk-based preventive controls. Donna Schaffner, associate director…  » Read more

Digi launches wireless temperature monitoring system

Digi International has introduced Digi Honeycomb, a service that continuously and wirelessly monitors the temperature of perishable goods. The monitoring system provides alerts and warnings of equipment irregularities and temperature analytics. A subscription-based service, Digi Honeycomb is comprised of Bluetooth enabled hand-held probes, wireless sensors, gateways and software that allow temperature data to be monitored, logged, retrieved and integrated into back-office systems. Digi Honeycomb is NSF certified and National Institute of Standards and Technology traceable. Automatic alerts…  » Read more

IFIC names new president

The International Food Information Council (IFIC) has named Joseph Clayton president and CEO, effective July 11. Clayton also will serve as CEO of the IFIC Foundation. Clayton is currently the interim president of the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI). He previously served as AFFI’s executive vice president of public affairs. Prior to joining AFFI, he held leadership roles with Golin International and Widmeyer Communications, where he served as chief executive officer. “Joe brings keen insights into the intersections among…  » Read more

US, Canada food safety systems comparable

FDA has signed an arrangement with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and the Department of Health Canada (Health Canada) recognizing each other’s food safety systems as comparable to each other. The arrangement was signed at a meeting of the FDA-CFIA Health Canada Joint Committee on Food Safety. Each partner will consider the oversight of the other when prioritizing inspection activities. This is the second time that the FDA has recognized a foreign food safety system as comparable, the first…  » Read more

Antimicrobial resistance research funding available

The USDA is making $6 million available to fund research to address antimicrobial resistance (AMR). This funding is available through the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill, and administered by USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). Applications must address one or more of the following: Develop novel systems approaches to investigate the ecology of microbial resistance microbes and gene reservoirs in the environment in animals, in crops, in food products, or in farm-raised aquaculture…  » Read more

USDA funds food safety programs for small farms

USDA has made $4.7 million available in grants for food safety education, training, and technical assistance projects that address the needs of owners and operators of small to mid-sized farms, beginning farmers, socially-disadvantaged farmers, small processors, small fresh fruit and vegetable merchant wholesalers, food hubs, farmers’ markets, and others.  The grants, offered through the Food Safety Outreach Program and administered by USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), are designed to help these stakeholders comply with new…  » Read more

FDA publishes Sanitary Transportation rule

The FDA has finalized a new food safety rule under the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that will help to prevent food contamination during transportation. The rule will require those involved in transporting human and animal food by motor or rail vehicle to follow recognized best practices for sanitary transportation, such as properly refrigerating food, adequately cleaning vehicles between loads and properly protecting food during transportation. The rule implements the Sanitary Food Transportation Act of 2005 (SFTA) as well…  » Read more

USDA launches GroupGAP program

The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) announced the official launch of GroupGAP, a new certification program that helps small and mid-sized growers and cooperatives meet retailers' on-farm food safety requirements. "We know that GAP certification can sometimes be cost-prohibitive for smaller farmers," said AMS Administrator Elanor Starmer. "GroupGAP allows these farmers to demonstrate compliance with strong food safety standards and share the cost of certification across a group of growers. That means greater market access for farmers, more…  » Read more

Questions to ask water testing labs

Choosing a water testing lab to determine surface water quality to comply with food safety laws may seem straightforward. It isn’t. With the introduction of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), small differences may have a big impact on whether or not your results are acceptable to an inspector or not. Knowing the answers to some key questions in advance of sending samples in can make all the difference. Do you…  » Read more

Western Growers donates $1M to produce safety research

Western Growers (WG) announced it's $1 million donation to the Center for Produce Safety (CPS) to advance food safety research and develop ready-to-use solutions to improve the safety of fresh produce globally. WG’s contribution puts CPS over the $10 million mark for their Campaign for Produce Safety, which aims to raise $20 million by 2020 to fund critically needed, actionable food safety research.  “With nearly a decade of cooperation and collaboration between our two organizations, we are honored to help…  » Read more

FDA issues guide on reducing acrylamide in food

The FDA has issued final guidance to the food industry to help growers, manufacturers and food service operators take steps to reduce levels of acrylamide in certain foods. Acrylamide is a chemical that may form in certain foods during high-temperature cooking, such as frying, roasting and baking, the FDA said. The National Toxicology Program characterizes the substance as “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen.” The FDA’s guidance recommends that companies be aware of the levels of acrylamide in the foods…  » Read more

Water sampling for FSMA compliance

Recently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Final Rule on Produce Safety. One area that was tweaked in the final rule from the proposed rule was clarification around sampling when testing irrigation water for fresh produce. Recall that the FSMA classifies two types of water used in the field: agricultural and indirect water. If water comes into direct contact with the harvestable portion of a plant, it is considered agricultural water. If…  » Read more

Produce groups to host webinars on FSMA final rules

Industry members will have an opportunity to interact with FDA and ask questions about three final Food Safety Modernization Act rules and their implementation requirements via two free webinars. Each of the 90-minute webinars is hosted by Produce Marketing Association (PMA) and United Fresh Produce Association, in partnership with regional produce associations. Registration is now available online. The webinar covering the produce safety rule will be Dec. 11 at 1:30 p.m. EST. The webinar covering the…  » Read more

Trio of final FSMA rules published in Federal Register

FDA has published three final rules that are key components of the revised Food Safety Modernization Act. The rules are accessible through the online Federal Register links below. The Produce Safety rule establishes science-based standards for growing, harvesting, packing, and holding produce that are designed to work effectively for food safety across the wide diversity of produce farms. The Foreign Supplier Verification Program rule requires food importers to verify that foreign suppliers are producing food…  » Read more

More final FSMA rules submitted to Federal Register

FDA has submitted the final produce safety, foreign supplier verification and third party accreditation rules of the Food Safety Modernization Act to the Federal Register for publication, as required by the court. An additional rule, one covering preventive controls, was submitted Aug. 31. Documents submitted to the Federal Register can publish several days after they are submitted, with larger documents taking longer to process and display. The FDA said it is committed to sharing information…  » Read more