In FDA’s 2018 Strategic Policy Roadmap, the agency identified four priority areas to help further its commitment to advance public health. In identifying areas which it had some notable news and statements over the last week, FDA noted the following specifically related to food and beverage:
For the priority area to Empower consumers to make better and more informed decisions about their diets and health; and expand the opportunities to use nutrition to reduce morbidity and mortality from disease:
- FDA will hold four public meetings to discuss draft produce safety rule guidance. The public meetings will be held in different regions of the country to provide information and facilitate comment so that stakeholders can better evaluate and provide input on the draft Produce Safety Rule guidance. The information presented will focus on the various chapters of the draft guidance: general provisions; personnel qualifications and training; health and hygiene; biological soil amendments of animal origin; domesticated and wild animals; growing, harvesting, packing and holding activities on a farm; equipment, tools, buildings, and sanitation; records; and variances. Stakeholder panels will discuss various issues. There will be opportunities for questions and open public comment. Read QA’s news post here.
- FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., and Deputy Commissioner Anna Abram provided statements on the FDA’s new plan to advance plant, animal biotechnology innovation. Innovations in plant and animal biotechnology offer tremendous opportunities for advancing public health. Promising new technologies that can edit animal and plant genomes have the potential to improve human and animal health, animal well-being, food productivity and food security. Read the full statement posted October 30, 2018.
- Gottlieb discussed FDA’s new consideration of labeling for sesame allergies. Food allergies have touched the lives of most of us. Thousands of Americans experience life-threatening, food-related reactions each year, and an estimated 20 people die from them annually. In some cases, such reactions occur despite a careful reading of packaged food labels by conscientious consumers. Read QA’s news post here.