State departments of agriculture are the front line of protection for consumers when it comes to food safety. State agencies, including state departments of agriculture, play a vital role in implementing and enforcing our nation’s system of food safety and inspection laws.
In 2011, the Food Safety and Modernization Act (FSMA) was signed into law and fundamentally began the process of transforming our country’s food safety system from a reactive (recalls and trace back) to preventive (education and evaluation) framework. State departments of agriculture and other state agencies are charged with implementing significant portions of FSMA, notably:
- Produce Safety Rule (including special provisions for sprout production)
- Preventive Controls for Human Food
- Preventive Controls for Animal Food.
Currently, 46 states and one territory have entered into cooperative agreements with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to educate and/or regulate farms subject to the rule based on a framework NASDA developed through its agreement with FDA.