United Fresh was honored to assist FDA with their internal regulator training program by arranging for United Fresh Member Apio to share with FDA information about sanitary transportation practices in the fresh produce industry. On August 31, 2017, Apio’s Brian Zomorodi, VP of Quality & Food Safety, and Jamey Eilerman, Director of Logistics, participated in the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food Webinar at FDA’s CFSAN Headquarters, in conjunction with the FDA’s 2017 FSMA Rule Readiness Webinar Series for federal, state, and local inspection personnel that conduct inspections under the new FSMA regulations. The webinar was designed for regulators to hear directly from those who are impacted and covered by the Sanitary Transportation Rule. The fresh produce, grain, and feed industries were represented on the webinar, alongside FDA subject matter experts who provided perspective on the implementation of the Sanitary Transportation Rule.
Zomorodi and Eilerman gave an overview of Apio and how they have prepared and implemented the regulation as a company, which went into effect in April 2017 for larger operations. They also familiarized regulators with best practices of refrigerated transportation used by the produce industry to ensure food safety, time temperature control and overall compliance throughout the entire supply chain. They noted that the industry is still aligning on how to establish appropriate temperature requirements for fresh-cut produce, resulting in the formation of a Time-Temperature Control for Safety workgroup within the Food Safety and Technology Council.