Comments Sought in Ag Water Component of FSMA
United Fresh is encouraging anyone, including any individual, company, organization, government, etc. to, comment on FDA (or other governmental) documents including proposed rules for agriculture water requirements as part of Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).The proposed rules related to agricultural water would extend the compliance dates by an additional two years (e.g., larger operations that need to comply with the Produce Safety Rule in January 2018 would have had to comply with the water requirements by January 2020; the proposed rule would retain the January 2018 compliance date for the other provisions of the rule but would push back the water provision until 2022).
There are several parts of the ag water provision (Subpart E) that have been called into question. In some growing environments, it’s not clear that following the requirements of this provision will provide the intended public health benefit. For additional background, see this article.
An additional two years gives regulators, industry, and other stakeholders time to reevaluate the adequacy and feasibility of the water testing provision for the variety of farms subject to the rule. It is unclear how the current requirements might change as a result of this reevaluation, if at all.
Comments are due to FDA by Nov. 13 at midnight ET/9 pm PT.
How to comment:
- Go to the Federal Register’s link
- On the top right side, click “submit a formal comment”
- Paste the text of your comment into the field. Also, United Fresh suggests growers upload a formal letter in PDF form by clicking “+add a file.”
- Fill in the required, and if desired, optional, contact information
- Check the box that you understand that your comment is public (i.e., anyone can see anything in the text box or your uploaded file)