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.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA’s FSIS) and the state of Oregon have finalized a cooperative agreement that allow for Oregon’s inspection program to inspect meat products produced for shipment within the state.
The Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO) published a guidance that clarifies the differences between mandatory requirements of the Produce Safety Rule (PSR) and multiple U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Good Agricultural Practice (GAP) audits.
The Food Safety Authority of Ireland recently published an audit report that focused on food businesses’ levels of compliance with food law as it relates to traceability and labeling for meat products.
During a Tuesday afternoon workshop of the 2022 Food Safety Summit, regulators and the regulated industry shared suggestions for how to better communicate together and meet regulated requirements while maintaining a sensible level of operational necessity.
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many companies to pivot to virtual food safety audits and inspections, but there has been reluctance to sustain this model of remote evaluations. Recently, advances have emerged in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and development of novel approaches to auditing that have worked to bridge the gap and help virtual audits and inspections move closer to gaining equivalency to traditional onsite formats.
Understanding the types of violations observed during inspections is a requirement for correctly citing a violation and providing quality feedback to the facility operator. Breakdowns in this chain of communication can lead to additional inspections and possible enforcement actions, which waste valuable time, money, and effort. To ensure that this chain is firm, inspectors are provided with access to training and continuing education, as needed, to properly identify violations and apply their guiding regulations.
It can be challenging to maintain good working relationships with federal regulators when things are going well, but how do you leverage your best efforts during an inspection/audit especially when there are issues? Let's address how handling the inspection itself can be your most important asset, along with a fundamental understanding of the science and regulations that are in play.
While the fatal poisoning of more than 100 people with sulfanilamide sweetened with diethylene glycol occurred nearly 85 years ago, the herculean mobilization of federal, state, and local inspectors to retrieve product and prevent more deaths is as vital a lesson today as it was then.
As the U.S. emerges cautiously from the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is resuming standard operations for domestic inspections while continuing mission-critical work abroad.