OTA believes that every food producer has an obligation to supply safe food to the public. As an early supporter of food safety reform, OTA was fully engaged in the legislative process that resulted in the enactment of the Food and Drug Administration’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). One key provision we advocated for was that the produce safety rule not duplicate or conflict with the National Organic Program (NOP) standards. Yet, the FDA is not the only government agency with a role in the new Food Safety regime. The USDA is also involved in managing food safety changes as they relate to areas of food processing and food distribution.
U.S. organic producers must comply with all food safety and other food regulations in addition to meet the exacting standards of the USDA National Organic Program. OTA’s continuing work in food safety focuses on efforts to ensure both a safe organic food supply and food safety regulations that do not conflict with or put unnecessary burden on organic producers and handlers.
The FDA released final rules implementing the Food Safety Modernization Act. Of particular interest to the organic sector is FDA's Produce Safety Rule. The final rules clearly indicate that FDA listened to the feedback from organic producers and handlers and responded to the unique requirements of the organic system.