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New FDA Challenge to Develop Traceability in Food Safety Efforts

The Food and Drug Administration has launched an initiative to bring on change to the development of affordable, technology-based traceability tools to protect people and animals from contaminated food. This will allow rapid identification of food sources and assist them in removing contaminated products from the market as quickly as possible. 

Formally known as “The FDA New Era of Smarter Food Safety Low- or No-Cost Tech-Enabled Traceability Challenge” it sets forth a blueprint, initially released in the summer of 2020, that will encourage financial models to reflect the no-cost solutions that will allow producers of any size to participate in. Utilizing technology is one of, if not the most, core functions of the New Era initiative. 

Acting Commissioner of the FDA, Janet Woodcock, M.D., says of making food safety more accessible, “One of the FDA’s highest priorities is protecting consumers from foodborne illnesses. We hope to find new, innovative ways to encourage firms of all sizes to voluntarily adopt tracking technologies that can help our nation modernize the way we work together to determine possible sources of foodborne illnesses as quickly as possible to keep Americans safe.”

This challenge calls upon food technology solution providers and companies that need FDA device registration, along with all members of the food supply chain to use these economic models that encourage widespread adoption to provide the forecasted benefits.

Facilities that need FDA registration, importers, distributors, and restaurants are encouraged to participate. Coming up with solutions will help the FDA put better practices into place in the future, along with the opportunity for the winner to display their work in an FDA webinar publicly. For more information about the challenge, see the FDA’s proposed outline and initiatives

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