Food Defense

What could Non-Compliance with the FSMA do to my business?

March 27, 2024 | 2 Min Read

Since the FSMA is a law, violations may be treated as criminal acts. If the FDA finds violations of the FSMA, it will issue a warning letter and publish it publicly on its website. Facilities have 15 days to comply with the warning letter; the FDA may re-inspect the plant to ensure compliance, and issue fees to cover the costs of the second inspection.

The FDA could issue a food recall order if the contamination is pervasive, and it has the authority to assess and collect fees related to the recall. If the health hazard to the public is great enough, the FDA may even seize the contaminated food article. In especially severe cases, the FDA may arrest responsible parties, conduct an extended audit of company practices, or even suspend the registration of food facilities (which can lead to temporary or permanent shutdown).

However, consequences aren’t only enacted by the FDA. It takes time, money, and effort to redo processes to ensure compliance, if they aren’t done properly in the first place. In the event of a recall, illness and negative media attention can erode a company’s reputation, decreasing consumer trust and profits. This can lead to a loss of market share and competitive advantage. Consumers can also sue companies in the case of wrongful death or illness related to foodborne illnesses.

Ensuring that your traceability actions are proactive, not reactive, is critical to securing the movement of food materials in the supply chain. To effectively implement both of these requirements, you must have a dynamic system in place to ensure that the bulk ingredients unloaded at your facility were not adulterated in transit. The FDA clearly stated in FD.4 that it is the food production facility, not the carrier, that must take mitigation steps necessary to protect the cargo during transit.

Surelock Seals provides that system. We are your Out of The Box solution for food traceability and security, offering both handheld and stationary RFID reader options to fit your budget. Our RFID seals are attached to the trailer hatches after the bulk ingredient is loaded, and if tampered with in transit, they will be permanently destroyed, informing you of possible adulteration.

If you have questions regarding food traceability or the FSMA, check out this previous article on those topics.

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