Regulatory concerns include audits and inspections, government agencies, the pivotal Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP), and international standards and guidances.
Audits are an important tool for verifying the safety and quality of a company's or facility's food products. Audits are conducted both internally and by certified third-party certification entities. The Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) is a private organization that benchmarks different auditing certification platforms as meeting its criteria to provide a harmonized umbrella certification.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for regulating about 80 percent of the U.S. food supply, encompassing all foods and food ingredients introduced into or offered for sale in interstate commerce, except for meat, poultry, certain processed egg products, and catfish, which are regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
The 2011 Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) gave FDA new authority to regulate the way foods are grown, harvested, and processed. FSMA grants FDA the authority to impose mandatory recalls and has paved the way for the issuance of more than a dozen rulemakings and at least ten guidance documents. FDA's New Era of Smarter Food Safety builds on the work done to implement FSMA.
Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) is a management system in which food safety is addressed through the analysis and control of microbiological, chemical, and physical hazards from raw material production, procurement, and handling, to manufacturing, distribution, and consumption of finished products.
Inspections cover many areas of food and beverage production, from farms and ranches to food processing facilities to restaurants. Inspectors are trained to ensure that facilities and equipment are in proper working order and properly sanitized, maintained, and permitted.
Food safety standards vary by country and world region, and different aspects of food safety are regulated differently depending on the region. Harmonization and tightening of food safety standards around the world are important as emerging countries seek to improve quality of life by ensuring safer food for all people.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) oversees meat, poultry, and egg products, accounting for 20 percent or less of the food supply. The majority of the food supply (80 percent or more) is regulated by FDA. USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) ensures that the U.S. meat, poultry, and processed egg supply is safe and properly labeled.
A risk-based approach is rapidly being incorporated into food safety systems. This can be attributed to the efforts of regulatory agencies and non-governmental organizations to develop requirements for food businesses. This article examines these food safety systems from a systematic, risk-based approach to allow the food safety practitioner to develop and improve food safety.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued final guidance for shell egg producers on how to comply with certain provisions in its Egg Rule that is designed to prevent Salmonella Enteritidis contamination of shell eggs.
A coalition of consumer organizations, industry, and government officials has written to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), urging the agency to expand the planned external review of its food safety program to include FDA’s Center of Veterinary Medicine.
On a webinar with the Alliance for a Stronger FDA, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) Deputy Commissioner, Dr. Janet Woodcock, discussed FDA’s data and information processing modernization efforts.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA’s FSIS) has announced that it will conduct a study about the effect of increased poultry line speeds on worker safety. Establishments that have received a line speed waiver under the New Poultry Inspection System must apply to participate in the study and receive a modified waiver.