U.S. House Agriculture Subcommittee Takes up Challenges in Global Food Supply Chain

On November 14, the U.S. House Agriculture Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture addressed the issue of invasive species and their impacts on the U.S. food supply chain. In his opening statement to begin the hearing Chairman of the Subcommittee, Jim Costa (D-CA) pointed out, “Along our southern border and in seaports across the country…

Food Safety: In Progress

Food Safety48 million people are sickened each year by foodborne pathogens. 3,000 are killed each year according to the CDC. For the non-Mathletes, that’s 1-in-6. The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) passed in 2011 was supposed to change all that. With the FSMA, for the first time, the U.S. FDA is authorized to help prevent rather than simply respond to outbreaks of foodborne illness. But 4 years later, changes are still a work in progress.

FDA Revises Food Safety Rules

Food SafetyAfter farmers complained that the regulations could hurt business, The Food and Drug Administration revised sweeping food safety rules proposed last year. Regulators say balancing the need for tighter food safety standards after major food-borne illness outbreaks in spinach, eggs, peanuts and cantaloupe against the needs of farmers who are new to such regulations has been a challenge.…

Food Safety News: Frozen Food Fights Back

Keri Glassman

Registered dietitian and author Keri Glassman

Frozen food makers have launched their first national TV ad in defense of their products as the category fights to boost slipping sales. The ad includes the tag line, “Frozen: How Fresh Stays Fresh,” and is intended to address negative misconceptions people have about frozen foods.  In a phone interview, Kraig Naasz, president of the American Frozen Food Institute, disclosed that the group plans to invest as much as $90 million in the campaign over three years.

“This is a long-term strategy. The primary purpose is to enter into a dialogue with consumers,” he said.…

U.S. Manufacturers May Pick Up Tab For FSMA

Recent OMB Report & Other Factors Indicate U.S. Food Manufacturers May Pick up Tab For FSMA

In February of this year Cansler Consulting foretold of the fiscal challenges ahead at the Food and Drug Administration (click here to read article) in implementing the nation’s new food safety law, The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).  Late last week the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released a congressionally-mandated report outlining potential impacts of budget sequestration on defense and non-defense discretionary programs verifying our analysis.  The 400-page document showcases the impacts that budget cuts would have on all areas of government, including the safety of our nation’s food supply that is under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Agriculture.

Dept of Ag to Cut nearly $3 Billion Next Year

According to the OMB report the Department of Agriculture would be required to cut a total $2.996 billion in the remaining eight months of FY 2013 (January to September 2013).  This includes $86 million from the Food Safety Inspection Service that is responsible for the safety of the nation’s commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products.…

Congress Agrees on User Fees & Targeted Inspections For FDA

With presidential politics in full swing it’s hard to find an issue in Washington where bipartisan support exists.  But in the past two weeks both legislative chambers have overwhelmingly supported user fees and targeted inspections for the federal agency responsible for the food Americans eat and the drugs we take every day. Overwhelming Last week…

FDA Faces Challenges with New Law

FDA faces challenges with new food safety lawsThe U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will face significant challenges in coming years to implement the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). The new law gives FDA additional authority to regulate food safety laws especially those impacting food product imports. One of the big challenges is how to pay for the stricter regulations?

Consider, about 65% of all FDA inspections of U.S. food manufacturing systems are conducted through cooperative efforts with state and local agencies. But state and local governments continue to operate under significant fiscal constraints.…

Importers Beware!

Food safety regulation balancing with corporate survivalPresident Obama signed into law The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA – P.L. 111-353) on January 4, 2011. The Food and Drug Administration will publish their FSMA regulations this year. What this means for importers is:

  • prepare to establish a risk-based foreign supplier verification program that guarantees imported food from each supplier is produced to the same U.S. safety standards required under the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act as amended by FSMA.
  • maintain thorough documentation on your consignments, including ingredients and the manufacturing processes involved
  • traceability of food products for humans and animals are the responsibility of the importer
  • if food products for humans or animals are not allowed entry into the U.S. within 15 calendar days the goods may be placed in a warehouse at the importer’s risk and expense.  If the goods are not allowed entry within six months from the date of importation, they can be sold at public auction or destroyed. Perishable items may be sold sooner. Destruction of any contaminated consignment(s) that are refused entry into the U.S. must be accomplished within the regulatory guidelines of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Custom and Border Protection (CBP).
  • in cases where FDA has “reasonable probability” of the food article causing serious adverse health effects or death to humans or animals, FDA may suspend the registration of the food facility.…