Learn Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food with FDA and FSPCA Webinars

To help increase understanding of the FSMA Final Rule – Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food against Intentional Adulteration (IA Rule), Food Safety Prevention Controls Alliance (FSPCA) has collaborated with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to offer an upcoming webinar on Oct. 24 at 11 a.m. CST. Join the webinar to learn best practices, strategies, and tips to build your comprehension of the IA rule. The upcoming session will focus on a separate topic and we encourage you to watch the first two sessions from June 20 and Aug. 22.

Just like you, we’ve noticed that the IA rule can be challenging to comprehend. These webinars will provide stakeholders with more information about the IA Rule and assist food facilities that are required to comply with the IA rule to have a more in-depth understanding of those requirements.

AIB’s Earl Arnold said the June 22 webinar covered the general requirements of the food defense plan and focused on the requirements of the vulnerability assessment as required by regulation. Important key terms were reviewed and discussed to ensure understanding; they included vulnerability, significant vulnerability, and actionable process step. These three points are critical to ensure vulnerability assessments are conducted properly.

The FDA clarified and stated there is not a regulated method in conducting these assessments. The FDA discussed their process for entire food chains, as well as individual facilities using the Carver Plus Shock method. The results of these assessments are available for review in a published report. They restated this is not the only method you can use. It was also mentioned in the regulation that a HACCP or HARPC method can be used.

The remainder of the webinar focused on the requirements of the vulnerability assessment. For each point, step, or procedure, a facility must consider, at a minimum:

  • Potential public health impact
  • Degree of physical access to product
  • Ability of an attacker to successfully contaminate the product

The webinar also reiterated when conducting the vulnerability assessment you must consider this could be done by an insider, or someone you have welcomed into the facility. The FDA stated at the conclusion of the webinar the next session (Aug. 22) discussed the 4 key activity types and potential ways these can be utilized in the vulnerability assessment.

The webinars will be one hour in length which includes a short Q&A session. The next webinar is on Oct. 24 at 11 a.m. CST, so register now and you’ll receive an email confirmation containing information about joining the webinar.

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