On April 5, 2016 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)published the final rule on the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food Rule
. This final regulation fulfills FDA's statutory obligation to issue and implement provisions of the 2005 Safe Food Transportation Act
as well as the requirements in Section 111 of FSMA. This final rule will affect many produce shippers, carriers and receivers as it establishes requirements and resources regarding:
- Motor and rail vehicles and transportation equipment to protect food during transportation,
- The responsible parties for transportation operations,
- Training and technical assistance by FDA, and
- Recordkeeping to demonstrate compliance with the rule.
It is important to note that this rule does not cover on-farm transportation. FDA is considering development of guidance for on-farm transportation and, of course, farm activities are covered under the Produce Rule
It’s anticipated the agency will soon be issuing important companion guidance documents for all final FSMA rules
that will provide more detailed information about coverage and compliance requirements. There will be an opportunity to provide comments on these upcoming draft guidance documents, so stay tuned.
FSMA Final Rule Webinars
PMA hosted a webinar series with allied associations, featuring the FDA.
FDA Resources on the Sanitary Transportation Rule
Who is Covered
- With some exceptions, the final rule applies to shippers, receivers, loaders and carriers who transport food in the United States by motor or rail vehicle, whether or not the food is offered for or enters interstate commerce. It also applies to: ◦persons, e.g., shippers, in other countries who ship food to the United States directly by motor or rail vehicle (from Canada or Mexico), or by ship or air, and arrange for the transfer of the intact container onto a motor or rail vehicle for transportation within the U.S., if that food will be consumed or distributed in the United States.
- The rule does not apply to exporters who ship food through the United States (for example, from Canada to Mexico) by motor or rail vehicle if the food does not enter U.S. distribution.
- Companies involved in the transportation of food intended for export are covered by the rule until the shipment reaches a port or U.S. border.
Sanitary Transportation Rule Guidance Documents
Please stay tuned, as FDA is still compiling compliance guides on the Sanitary Transportation Rule.
This and all of our food safety-related material is made possible by the members who support PMA's Gold Circle Campaign for Food Safety. Find out how your company can help improve produce food safety throughout the supply chain.