FDA Announces Implementation of Traceability Projects under FSMA

Sep 13, 2011   

On September 7, 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced two new pilot projects to aid tracking of food products, in an effort to prevent the spread of foodborne illness outbreaks. Through collaborative efforts with the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), the FDA is implementing these projects, one concerning produce and the other involving processed foods, as directed by the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Under the pilot projects, available technologies and methods for tracing foods will be evaluated, including tracking at different points in the supply chain and monitoring how rapidly data reaches the FDA.

The recently-enacted FSMA directs the FDA to establish a number of measures aimed at ensuring the nation’s food supply remains safe for public consumption. While we previously reported on other FDA actions pursuant to the FSMA, these pilot projects remain among the first measures taken by the Agency in implementing this legislation. Ultimately, the FDA intends to use data collected from the projects to undertake rulemaking concerning the new recordkeeping requirements. As directed by the FSMA, FDA must adopt regulations pertaining to recordkeeping requirements for high-risk foods. Through the data collection efforts undertaken in these projects, FDA intends to have the information necessary to define “high-risk” foods and establish the required recordkeeping activities of the facilities that handle them. An overview of some of the other requirements under the FSMA may be accessed here.

Fuerst Ittleman will continue to monitor the FDA’s measures under the FSMA. For more information regarding the FSMA or FDA regulations, please contact us at contact@fidjlaw.com or (305) 350-5690.