As the Winter Fancy Food Show is fast approaching (January 15-17, 2012), many foreign exhibitors are preparing to ship via DHL, UPS, or FedEx for their last minute smaller samples that don’t warrant a space on a cargo ship. So the question is, Will all go well for those Biscotti cookies from Italy? Or that great tasting Pino Noir from France? The answer could be yes and should be yes; as long as the exporters remember to follow a few compliance guidelines that, although are very simple, are often overlooked.
Exporters should remember even though they are exhibitors and may not have any other business in the U.S., they are still obligated to have a FDA Food Facility Registration as required under the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002. Additionally, their FDA Food Facility Registration also requires that they list a designated U.S. Agent for FDA communications. It is a common error that even if a shipper does remember to obtain a Food Facility Registration, he often fails to put the proper address; using the forwarder or shipper’s address instead of the correct Foreign Food Facility address. For a quick way to register a food facility and have a designated U.S. Agent for FDA communications, visit www.registrarcorp.com
Exporters are also obligated to file a Prior Notice before shipping their food or beverages. Advance notice of these shipments allows FDA, with the support of the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP), to target import inspections more effectively and help protect that nation’s food supply against terrorist acts and other public health emergencies. For more information on how to file a Prior Notice go to www.priornotice.com
The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) require food product labels on almost all packaged foods to include information like nutritional values, ingredients, and calorie counts in readable type. Labeling violations result in more than 22% of all food detentions in the United States. For more information on how to file a Prior Notice go to www.registrarcorp.com
Exporters frequently use express carriers (DHL, UPS, FedEx, etc), thinking they can avoid complying with many of the FDA food safety regulations. But, in the year 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration began its detailed implementation work for the Food Safety Modernization Act (“FSMA”). Food safety advocates in Congress are now going after the additional funding FDA needs to fulfill the various FSMA mandates.
Another FDA regulation that exhibitors at tradeshows often overlook is the low-acid canned food requirements. The Food and Drug Administration requires a registration for the manufacturing site and submission of process filings (submission identifiers, or an “SID” for each product, each size) for low-acid and acidified canned foods. For more information on how to file an FCE/ SID go to www.fce-sid.com
Follow the above-mentioned compliance tips when you are shipping your food and beverages to the 2012 Winter Fancy Food Show this year and your products should arrive without delay.
For U.S. FDA Regulatory Assistance, contact Registrar Corp at www.registrarcorp.com/livehelp or phone us at +1-757-224-0177.