The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) hosted its first of three Phase I Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) regional seminars July 27â€“28, 2014, in Sacramento, California. The sold-out, two day meeting was developed to assist the industry in understanding the largest set of rules to impact feed and petfood since the 1950s.
"Providing FSMA-related training for our members is a top priority for AFIA," said Richard Sellers, AFIA senior vice president of legislative and regulatory affairs. "In order to make this information as convenient as possible, we decided to hold a number of regional seminars throughout the US."
The training course, taught by AFIA legislative and regulatory staff, was attended by animal feed and petfood manufacturers as well as ingredient suppliers interested in gaining a better understanding of how FSMA will affect their businesses. The course provided an overview of the new law and covered topics such as "CGMPs: The Foundation for an Effective Food Safety Plan," "What are the Key Components of a Supplier Verification Program?" and "Hazard Identification and Analysis.
Dr. Henry Turlington, AFIA director of quality and manufacturing regulatory affairs, began the seminar saying, "FSMA will have a major impact on our industry and that can be overwhelming, but this thing is doable! We will take this one step at a time to make sure we all have the knowledge needed to comply with FSMA."
Attendees of the meeting said they considered the materials provided by the course instructors "good information," "very timely" and think it "will help with developing documents and preparing for FSMA compliance" as the rule comes into effect.
The remaining two phase I trainings will be held in Des Moines, Iowa, and Atlanta, Georgia, Aug. 11â€“12 and Aug. 14â€“15, 2014, respectively. The Atlanta training remains open for registration while the Des Moines training sold out shortly after registration opened.
AFIA plans to host phase II and phase III FSMA regional seminars in 2015 and also offer a webinar series in correlation with the in-person meetings.