FDA extends comment period on food traceability rule

The FDA has extended the comment period for a proposed a new rule that will lay the foundation for ‘farm-to-table’ traceability across the US food industry.

The initial comment period on the proposed rule ran through November 23, but the regulator says it will now be extended to February 22, 2021, after hearing testimony from interested parties at three public meetings in the last few weeks.

The rule aims to establish additional traceability recordkeeping requirements “beyond what is already required in existing regulations,” according to the agency.

It applies to organisations that manufacture, process, pack or hold foods the regulator has designated for inclusion on a food traceability list, which includes foods that pose particular safety risks such as foodborne illnesses.

“FDA previously signalled its intention to extend the comment period for the information collection provisions after hearing concerns from several stakeholders that more time was needed to adequately review and analyse those provisions with consideration to the entire proposed rule,” said the regulator.

“The announcement … formally reopens and extends the comment period for the information collection provisions and extends the comment period for the entire rule.”

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