In this Week’s Edition:
FDA Releases Report on Foodborne Illness Risk Factors in Retail Deli Departments
FDA has released its report on a study of foodborne illness risk factors in retail food store deli departments. This study is part of a 10-year initiative that examines when foodborne illness risk factors, such as employees practicing poor personal hygiene, and food safety practices, like improper handwashing, occur; and their relationship to Food Safety Management Systems (FSMS) and Certified Food Protection Managers (CFPM). Data for this study were collected between 2015 and 2016. More information here.
FDA Investigating Environmental Impact of Sunscreen Chemicals
FDA will be conducting an environmental impact study on the effects of sunscreen chemicals on coral reefs.
FDA Releases Report on Red Onion Salmonella Outbreak
FDA has been working with the CDC, state partners and Canadian officials to investigate the largest Salmonella Newport outbreak in over a decade, which was linked to red onions. The FDA has released a 2020 Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Red Onions Report that includes an overview of the agency’s investigation findings, including factors that potentially contributed to the Salmonella contamination of red onions. More details here.
APHIS Proposes Allowing Mango Imports from Colombia
The pest risk assessment is available here.
FDA to Implement Sampling for Salinas Valley Lettuce
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will be collecting and testing samples of lettuce grown in California’s Salinas Valley from local commercial coolers from May through November 2021. The agency will test the samples for Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC), including E. coli O157:H7, and Salmonella spp. as part of ongoing surveillance efforts following reoccurring outbreaks linked to this region, including most recently in the fall of 2020. Details here.
FSIS Performing Clostridium perfringens Market Basket Survey
Starting in May 2021, FSIS will conduct a study to assess levels of C. perfringens in federally inspected ready-to-eat (RTE) meat and poultry products sold at retail locations. C. perfringens is a pathogen that can grow during improper cooling and hot holding of RTE products. The goal of the study is to determine the potential risk to consumers from large mass non-intact products (e.g., turkey breast or roast beef) that require an extended cooling time. The study will be performed in response to comments on the 2017 revised Appendix B guideline indicating that large mass non-intact products cannot be cooled quickly enough to meet the recommended cooling options.*
The samples will be collected at retail locations and analyzed by Food Emergency Response Network (FERN) laboratories. The results will be blinded and reported in aggregate on the FSIS website and in literature. FSIS does not expect to find samples with high levels of C. perfringens (>4-log10) due to previous studies reported in the literature as well as the lack of outbreaks associated with federally inspected RTE meat and poultry products. Regardless, enforcement actions will not be taken based on the study results. The study results will be used to assess whether changes are needed to the cooling recommendations in Appendix B for these products, or if a larger, more comprehensive baseline study is needed.
FSIS Updates Enforcement Policy Directive
The new directive is available here.
FSIS Revises Cooperative Interstate Shipment Directive
The revised directive is available here.
FDA Opens Portal for Submitting FSVP Records
FDA has opened the FSVP Importer Portal for FSVP Records Submission (Portal) for importers of human and animal and human food into the U.S. The FDA established the Portal to serve as a dedicated, streamlined way for importers to submit FSVP records electronically to the FDA, if they choose. FDA had been requesting records via email.
FSIS Increases Retail Dollar Limit Exemptions
The dollar limitations apply to the amount of meat and meat food products and poultry and poultry products that a retail store can sell to hotels, restaurants, and similar institutions without disqualifying itself for exemption from Federal inspection requirements.
FNS Buying Seafood for Food Assistance Programs
USDA announced it will purchase up to $159.4 million in domestically produced seafood, fruits, legumes, and nuts for distribution to a variety of domestic food assistance programs, including charitable institutions. These purchases are being made utilizing funds under the authority of Section 32 of the Agricultural Adjustment Act (PL 74-320), as amended (Section 32).
FSIS Updates List of Foreign Establishments Eligible to Export to U.S.
FDA Import Alerts
The latest FDA import alerts are available here and include lead in candy, seafood, pig ear pet chews and more.
FDA Warning Letters
The latest FDA warning letters are:
Baltimore Beauty Security Square Mall
Anytime COVID Test LLCAdulterated and Misbranded Products Related to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)0
C&G Laboratorios SA de CV
Martinez Produce & Seafood Inc
Crown Wellness, Inc New Drug/Misbranded
J & L USA Inc.
Ismar Soluciones Dinámicas S de RL de CV
The Smoker’s Alternative
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