Companies must prepare for the reality of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) becoming even more vigilant to enforce the law and the safety of our food – which results in the emphasis of communication and safety within the supply chain.
How can we improve compliance, communication and food safety?
First full year of FSMA
The Food Safety Modernization Act was signed into law in 2011 and 2017 marks the first full year of compliance. The realization for large food-related companies is that the FDA will be carrying out more audits than ever before.
The FDA has the power to request records, inspect facilities, and even close them if conditions are not satisfactory.
The following are foundational elements of FSMA:
There are three key mandates under this category, including:
- Mandatory preventive controls for food facilities: The goal is to ensure all facilities have a written preventive control plan to mitigate potential hazards affecting food safety
- Mandatory produce safety standards: The FDA must establish a science-based, minimum standard for the harvesting of fresh produce
- Authority to prevent intentional contamination: Requires the FDA to develop a comprehensive plan to identify and secure vulnerable points of the food supply chain
Inspection and Compliance
The intention of FSMA is to develop an efficient and preventative control standard to protect public health. However, the law only works if enforced correctly. These tools ensure compliance:
- Mandated inspection frequency: FSMA demands a mandated inspection frequency of food facilities. Including five years within enactment of the law for facilities deemed ‘high-risk’ and no more than three years following.
- Record Access: The FDA will have access to all food safety records of facilities.
- Testing by accredited laboratories: The FDA is required to establish a laboratory accreditation program. When established, the laboratories will carry out specific food testing under direction of the agency.
PAR Technology & TempAlert IoT Partnership
ParTech has announced that TempAlert has become an IoT integration partner with PAR’s SureCheck Advantage Food Safety system.
TempAlert will integrate with SureCheck to enable 24x7 remote monitoring.
SureCheck has layered in remote sensor technology, which combined with Intelligent Checklists, Mobility and Cloud, ensures temperatures are captured and monitored from ‘farm to fork’.
John Sammon III, SVP and general manager of SureCheck, said the partnership will expand PAR’s offering for grocery, contract food, C-Store and quick-service restaurants.
“The decision to partner with TempAlert was driven largely by organic demand from our customer base. We have a number of pilots in place with both existing and potential new customers.”
Digitizing the Food Supply Chain
The food supply chain has notoriously been slow to embrace advanced technology. Broken communication and manual paper-based recording methods have traditionally been the norm.
Companies must fully adopt digital food safety and traceability tools to document all products from farm to fork.
Supply chain traceability allows companies to properly document, report and measure ROI regarding supply chain practices and FSMA compliance.
PAR’s SureCheck Food Safety system technology uses the IoT coupled with traceability software to support daily monitoring, data input and task management practices needed to ensure best practices and safety of products along the supply chain.
By digitizing the supply chain, businesses can reduce the number of FDA mandated recalls. The amount of recalls has steadily increased each year to 626 in 2015. These contaminated products not only put consumers in danger but also incur damage to the bottom-line.
Using digital, food safety and traceability devices ensures your business is in full compliance with FSMA and the safety of products from ‘farm to fork’ which further reduces the risk of recalls, FDA fines and profit loss.
- Jordan Anderson is the product marketing specialist for the PAR SureCheck platform. Anderson uses his background in sales and marketing to discuss important issues regarding food safety; with the goal being to educate others on the dangers and consequences of improper food safety practice