What is in this article?:
- The United Fresh Produce Association is working to improve two proposed Food and Drug Administration regulatory rules designed to implement the Food Safety Modernization Act.
- The FSMA is the first major change in U.S. food safety laws in about 70 years.
- United Fresh calls the government’s proposed rules a “one-size-fits-all’ approach, placing the same food safety regulations across many crops and business sectors in the produce industry's farm-to-fork food chain.
Food safety and immigration reform receive top discussion at the 2013 United Fresh convention held in San Diego, Calif. Speakers included from left: Tom Stenzel, United Fresh Marketing Association; Barry Bedwell, California Grape & Tree Fruit League; Chalmers Carr, Titan Farms; and Monte Lake, CJ Lake, LLC.
Prior to submitting its official comments, United Fresh will publicly release a draft of its ideas to gain industry feedback. The association could tweak the comments before the submission to FDA.
Stenzel concluded, “The produce industry has hundreds, if not thousands, of different packing facilities and warehouses. We want them to be safe. We want to make sure that the (FDA) standards are not applied where there is no public health risk.”
Will Steele, United Fresh’s grower-shipper board chairman, called the diversity of the produce industry and the complexity of the FDA proposed rules a monumental undertaking.
“The stakes for our industry could not be higher,” Steele said.
Three more proposed FSMA proposed rules are forthcoming which will address foreign supplier verification, accredited third party certification, and preventative controls for animal food.
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