Rockville, MD—The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued two new rules under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that are intended to improve food safety. The rules take effect July 3.

The first rule gives FDA the authority to detain foods it believes are adulterated or misbranded or were made under unsafe conditions. Previously, it could only take such action if the items were clearly contaminated or mislabeled. The other regulation forces food importers to tell the agency if another country has refused a product’s entry. The goal of this rule is to keep FDA in the loop about possible risks from imported foods so it can take action if necessary.

“This authority strengthens significantly the FDA’s ability to keep potentially harmful food from reaching U.S. consumers,” stated FDA Deputy Commissioner for Foods Mike Taylor. “It is a prime example of how the new food safety law allows FDA to build prevention into our food safety system.”

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, June 2011