FDA Proposes New Food Safety Rules For Produce

Shoppers in the produce section

FDA has proposed two new food safety rules that will help prevent foodborne illness. The proposed rules implement the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and are available for public comment for the next 120 days. (See page two for comments on the proposed rules from the Produce Marketing Association and United Fresh.)

The rules follow outreach by FDA to the produce industry, the consumer community, other government agencies, and the international community. Since January 2011, FDA staff have toured farms and facilities nationwide and participated in hundreds of meetings and presentations with global regulatory partners, industry stakeholders, consumer groups, farmers, state and local officials, and the research community.

These two FSMA rules are part of an integrated reform effort that focuses on prevention and addresses the safety of foods produced domestically and imported, with additional rules to be published shortly.

The first rule proposed today would require makers of food to be sold in the U.S, whether produced at a foreign- or domestic-based facility, to develop a formal plan for preventing their food products from causing foodborne illness. The rule would also require them to have plans for correcting any problems that arise. The FDA seeks public comment on this proposal. FDA is proposing that many food manufacturers be in compliance with the new preventive controls rules one year after the final rules are published in the Federal Register but small and very small businesses would be given additional time.

FDA also seeks public comment on the second proposed rule released today, which proposes enforceable safety standards for the production and harvesting of produce on farms. This rule proposes science- and risk-based standards for the safe production and harvesting of fruits and vegetables.

FDA is proposing that larger farms be in compliance with most of the produce safety requirements 26 months after the final rule is published in the Federal Register. Small and very small farms would have additional time to comply, and all farms would have additional time to comply with certain requirements related to water quality.

“The FDA knows that food safety, from farm to fork, requires partnership with industry, consumers, local, state and tribal governments, and our international trading partners,” said FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D. “Our proposed rules reflect the input we have received from these stakeholders and we look forward to working with the public as they review the proposed rules.”

Before issuing the two rules, the FDA conducted extensive outreach that included five federal public meetings and regional, state, and local meetings in 14 states across the country as well as making hundreds of presentations to ensure that the rules would be flexible enough to cover the diverse industries to be affected. The FDA also visited farms and facilities of varying sizes.

“We know one-size-fits-all rules won’t work,” said Michael R. Taylor, FDA’s deputy commissioner for foods and veterinary medicine. “We’ve worked to develop proposed regulations that can be both effective and practical across today’s diverse food system.”

Additional rules to follow soon include new responsibilities for importers to verify that food products grown or processed overseas are as safe as domestically produced food and accreditation standards to strengthen the quality of third-party food safety audits overseas. Improving oversight of imported food is an important goal of FSMA. Approximately 15% of the food consumed in the U.S. is imported, with much higher proportions in certain higher risk categories, such as produce.

FDA plans to coordinate the comment periods on the major FSMA proposals as fully as possible to better enable public comment on how the rules can best work together to create an integrated, effective and efficient food safety system.

Topics:

Leave a Reply

4 comments on “FDA Proposes New Food Safety Rules For Produce

  1. I am not sure what the feds are thinking with this bill. Did ANYONE read the estimated costs with this thing for SMALL and VERY SMALL producers? Small producers are expected to see an ANNUAL cost of $12,972 and VERY SMALL producers (those who sell less than $25,000) $4697. How would any small farm stay in business with these kinds of additional taxes? Keep in mind that this is NOT profit, it is the value of the food you sell. If you sell produce VALUED at $25,000 of less for very small and $250,000 (forget $500,000 no one will qualify) for small farms. Most small farms struggle to afford things like additional equipment, employees, etc. With Obamacare, any small farm with a few more than 50 employees will be screwed. These rules seem like they were written to put all small farms out of business and leave only the large multi-nationals. I guess food safety was not the feds concern, protecting the profits of large multi-nationals is the name of the game. You will QUICKLY notice the LACK of regulations on food IMPORTED into this country. This whole food safety thing is SHAM. I am so sick of the feds trying to destroy family farms.

  2. One more thing, notice how all of the reporting slants contamination to the producers of food and NOT the processors, distributors, retailers or consumers? I will be my farm that more than 80% of food born illness EACH year is caused by the end user not properly cooking, storing, preparing or serving the food. Just go to subway sometime and watch the employees put on plastic gloves and then shove food waste from the prep line or the floor in the garbage and then directly, without washing or changing gloves, go right back to preparing food. Go to ANY grocery store and I will guarantee you I can find rotten food for sale, mold under the drip pans in produce, etc. I worked in the grocery retail space for 14 years before growing produce. I can guarantee you I have seen HUNDREDS of food safety issues over the years from ONE store. I have personally seen frozen food completely thawed, refrozen and put out for sale. I have seen black mold cleaned from produce drip pans. Deli and meat cases that routinely run at 50F or higher temp due to malfunctioning compressors that the store won't spend the money to repair. I have seen produce such as lettuce, broccoli, carrots, etc. arrive on unrefridgerated trucks at room temp put in the cooler and then later put out for sale. I have seen melons frozen and then put on the sales floor for sale. The list goes ON and ON. It made me sick at times. Yet all these articles want us to think that the PRODUCERS are the problem. Excuse ME! The large multi-nationals are the problem. The people who have no personal interest nor pride in their farm and only care about the profit. These rules WILL end many small family farms. They are draconian, overly financially burdensome and do NOT help make farms safer. For proof they do not work, just look at how the FDA looks the other way when there are dead chickens in processing plants, diseased steers coming from CAFO. NOTHING is done about these problems, yet MOST of the sickness comes from these operations. My comment on these rules will be that all producers who do NOT ship across state lines and sell directly to the end consumer, institution or retailer should be exempt. The feds have no business regulating intra-state commerce.

  3. Matt, Where did you find the article that gave you the cost estimates that you quoted? I agree that the family farm is under attack! They have us at a great disadvantage. If we fight this ridiculous proposal then it appears that we are not in favor of safe food. I really would like to be armed with the facts and what it means to the small growers before I try to voice my opinion. Dave

  4. I'm have a very small farm with 16 acres of fruit. I've spent the last 20 years replanting this place so i could look forward to something supplementing my retirement. Why are the not cracking down on wal mart, fred meyer, costco etc with all the birds in the store crapping on produce? I'm 61 and it will not be cost effective for my wife and i do go this route.

Farm Management Stories
NOAA Temperature Outlook For Winter 2015-2016
Farm Management
September 28, 2016
The Time For Climate Change Denial Is Over [Opinion]
Extreme cold, droughts, flooding, record-setting temperatures have all been a part of this year’s growing season. Read More
Marco Rubio tours a Central Florida citrus grove with industry dignitaries
Farm Management
September 27, 2016
Politicians May Be Taking Ag For Granted [Opinion]
Growers have become masters at ensuring a steady food supply, but warning, politicians: Ignore them at your peril. Read More
U.S. Capitol Building FEATURE
Citrus
September 26, 2016
Presidential Candidates Comment On Agricultural Issues
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump weigh in on a number of topics of concern to growers. Read More
Florida Sugar Cane field
Citrus
September 26, 2016
Florida Sugarcane Industry Strengthening From Within
Pot sweetens with promotions for three executive staffers of the state’s Growers Cooperative. Read More
cracked earth
Farm Management
September 24, 2016
Water Woes Continue In Northeast
Hydrologist says this year’s conditions are bad but are part of a typical water cycle. Read More
Photo courtesy of UF/IFAS
Berries
September 23, 2016
What U.S. Consumers Think About Florida Blueberries
For growers, the good news is that shoppers like what you are serving up. But more can be done to whet appetites. Read More
water droplet_generic
Citrus
September 22, 2016
Senate Committee Report Says WOTUS Reforms Needed
A report issued from the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee says federal agencies overreach their authority to regulate Read More
The Latest
Citrus
September 29, 2016
Winter Is Coming, And It Could Get Wicke…
Forecast sees heightened freeze threat for Florida citrus; frequent snow to blast Northeast. Read More
Farm Management
September 28, 2016
Grants Available For Sustainable Ag In T…
More than $1 million is marked for grants to study, demonstrate, and improve sustainable ag practices. Read More
Farm Management
September 28, 2016
The Time For Climate Change Denial Is Ov…
Extreme cold, droughts, flooding, record-setting temperatures have all been a part of this year’s growing season. Read More
Farm Management
September 27, 2016
Politicians May Be Taking Ag For Granted…
Growers have become masters at ensuring a steady food supply, but warning, politicians: Ignore them at your peril. Read More
Citrus
September 26, 2016
Presidential Candidates Comment On Agric…
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump weigh in on a number of topics of concern to growers. Read More
Citrus
September 26, 2016
Florida Sugarcane Industry Strengthening…
Pot sweetens with promotions for three executive staffers of the state’s Growers Cooperative. Read More
Farm Management
September 24, 2016
Water Woes Continue In Northeast
Hydrologist says this year’s conditions are bad but are part of a typical water cycle. Read More
Citrus
September 22, 2016
Senate Committee Report Says WOTUS Refor…
A report issued from the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee says federal agencies overreach their authority to regulate Read More
Farm Management
September 20, 2016
Study Says Produce Imports Good For Texa…
Imports from Mexico would add jobs in the Lone Star State. Read More
Farm Management
September 19, 2016
PMA, United Fresh Establish Joint Workin…
The joint effort will result in greater efficiency and a more meaningful impact within the fresh produce industry. Read More
Citrus
September 17, 2016
August Was The Hottest In 136 Years
The extended heat wave continues a streak of 11 consecutive months of record-setting temperatures. Read More
Farm Management
September 14, 2016
Tasteful Selections Takes Home The 2016 …
The award was presented at United Fresh’s Washington Conference where discussions focused on labor, trade agreements, and the upcoming election. Read More
Farm Management
September 13, 2016
USDA Expands New York Primary Disaster A…
More counties have been added to the original disaster declaration, and more growers are eligible for funding assistance. Read More
Farm Management
September 10, 2016
Drought Rages On In Northeast
Growers see bright side of dry conditions with possibility of sweeter fruit. Read More
Citrus
September 9, 2016
Are You Feeling Befuddled By Fickle Fore…
In any situation, proactivity pays. We can wait for the sky to fall, or we can sing in the rain. Read More
Citrus
September 7, 2016
Hermine Rains Down On Already-Soaked Sun…
Storm delivers extra dose of precipitation during one of the state’s wettest spells on record. Read More
Farm Management
September 6, 2016
Study Says Early Springs More Frequent I…
Scientists at Cornell University say ‘nightmare scenario’ for many growers going to be the norm if steps aren’t taken to stop global warming. Read More
Farm Management
September 4, 2016
Study Shows Slow Snowmelt, Water Availab…
University of Nevada, Reno scientist is part of team studying areas with significant snowfall. Read More
[gravityform id="62" title="false" description="false"]