The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) helped to transform the FDA and our overall food safety system into one in which food regulators worked to prevent contamination of our food, instead of simply trying to react every time there was an outbreak. It was passed by Congress in 2010 and signed into law by President Obama in January 2011.
One complaint of the FSMA is that our children are still needlessly at risk because key policies of the FSMA have still not been fully implemented.
Two new rules that were proposed today by the FDA will help to finally implement FSMA, including:
- a requirement that makers of food to be sold in the United States, whether produced at a foreign- or domestic-based facility, to develop a formal plan for preventing their food products from causing foodborne illness and to have plans for correcting any problems that arise.
- enforceable safety standards for the production and harvesting of produce on farms.
Other new rules that will be proposed soon will "include new responsibilities for importers to verify that food products grown or processed overseas are as safe as domestically produced food" and "a preventive controls rule for animal food facilities, similar to the preventive controls rule proposed today for human food."
Since many people were expecting new rules to be approved last April, that we are finally seeing movement towards getting the Food Safety Modernization Act fully implemented is great news.
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