As most of you know by now, the FDA has finally released two long-awaited rules relating to produce safety from the Food Safety Modernization Act. I will be providing a synopsis and a decision-tree that will help you understand how you might/or might not be affected as soon as possible.
We will be working with other agricultural service providers to develop comments on the impact of the proposed rules to New England produce growers. If you have particular concerns or questions, feel free to send them to me at: firstname.lastname@example.org I would encourage you to submit comments yourselves directly. The FDA will provide electronic access to the proposed rule, but paper copies may also be obtained through the mail, upon request.
There will be a 120 day comment period for the public. The deadline for comments is: May 16, 2013, but it does not look like they have opened the dockets yet.
Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption
Proposed Standards for Produce Safety – covers those fruits and vegetables that are likely to be consumed raw (e.g. spinach not potatoes).
A summary is available at: http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodSafety/FSMA/ucm334114.htm?source=govdelivery
The complete document is available here. (The document is 547 pages).
Submit comments on this rule here. Search for Docket FDA-2011-N-0921