In 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) introduced the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA); an act that includes the widest sweeping regulations to be introduced in the food industry since the Food Bioterrorism Act of 2002. One of the most noteworthy rules included in the Act allows FDA to administratively detain food for human or animal consumption if there is reason to believe the food has been adulterated or misbranded. This interim final rule was accepted without change on February 5, 2013.

Prior to the rule’s implementation, the FDA was only able to detain goods if there was credible evidence that the food products posed a serious health risk. Furthermore, the agency can now hold products out of the marketplace for up to 30 days while it determines if further enforcement action, such as seizure, is required. While the interim final rule went into effect in July 2011, the final rule’s adoption without change is a firm testament to the gravity and significance given to FSMA regulations.

Reprinted with permission from A.N. Deringer Inc.