I just received the following email and urge you to follow the link and learn about the impact of this new Federal regulation.
Most have you have heard about the Food Safety and Modernization Act. Upon first inspection it looked like a pain in the ass for farmers to comply with, but doable. That was certainly my personal belief; that our farm would just forge ahead into our latest of new realities. About a month ago I received a call from Dr. Rich Bonanno, U-Mass EXT and Roger Noonan, President of New England Farmers Union , telling me that all farmers should be looking very hard at this because it poses a serious threat for northeast regional farming.
Shortly thereafter a group convened of about 25 concerned farmers, Extension Personnel from NH, Vt, and Mass, food safety folks and a few politicians including our ag commissioner and marketing director from the Live Free or Die state. We got together with the express purpose of trying to sort out what FDA is really saying, and try to wade through the federal register to ferret out triggers, compliance mandates etc; in short, try to figure FSMA out. It was (and still is) a huge undertaking (4000 pages and adding) in the federal register, plus references to the 2003 Food and Cosmetic Safety Act. What we found out, and are in agreement about, is frankly very alarming. My personal interest was fruit and vegetables, but even from what little I clearly understand I can see that it effects the wide range of ag commodity groups.
So this is where you come in. All we are asking is that you go to the website www.farmtalkfsma.org and spend about an hour looking it over. Think about how this will,or will not effect your operation. Please forward it to anybody or groups that may be a stakeholder. Our group, thinks this act takes no prisoners, and if you think you are currently exempt, you may well be in for a very rude surprise.
We took this on because nobody has the time to wade through this, I sure as hell didnt and neither do you. Hopefully this will be useful tool for you. We believe FSMA is a real game changer for all of us, and your opinions need to be heard.
All the Best,
Pooh Sprague, Pres NHVBGA