NASDA and FDA have collaborated to develop steps for Produce Safety Rule inspections as part of the Food Safety Modernization Act’s implementation. The new inspection process is designed to provide nationwide consistency and constructive feedback to farmers about exactly what is examined and how inspections relate to regulation.
The brand-new feedback channels developed by NASDA and FDA establish an unprecedented line of communication between farmers and regulators. “When developing the inspection process, we wanted to cultivate transparency and equip farmers with the information needed to run their businesses safely and productively,” NASDA CEO Dr. Barb Glenn said.
New routine inspections beginning this spring will be conducted mostly by the 42 state departments of agriculture and two departments of health that have cooperative agreements with FDA. NASDA members are working with state and federal stakeholders to ensure farmers are educated on the new protocols.
“States have long been the lead sentinels for food safety. We’re excited to expand NASDA’s role in a manner that both ensures future viability of America’s produce farms and advances public health goals,” Glenn said.
NASDA is a nonpartisan, nonprofit association that represents the elected and appointed commissioners, secretaries and directors of the departments of agriculture in all fifty states and four U.S. territories. NASDA grows and enhances agriculture by forging partnerships and creating consensus to achieve sound policy outcomes between state departments of agriculture, the federal government and stakeholders.