Swine fever outbreak in China sends pork prices soaring, threatens shortages

China produces and consumes two-thirds of the world’s pork, but output is plunging as Beijing destroys herds and blocks shipments to stop African swine fever. Importers are filling the gap by buying pork as far away as Europe, boosting prices by up to 40% and causing shortages in other markets.

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SGS accredited as a 3rd Party Certifying Body for FDA and FSMA in Vietnam (Food Safety FAQ)

SGS has been accredited for two FDA programs under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA): Voluntary Qualified Importer Program (VQIP) and Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP). These two programs allow expedited entry through Customs into the USA for Vietnamese food facilities/exporters certified under these programs. Read more

FDA plans to use WGS (whole genome sequencing) to protect consumers worldwide from food borne illnesses

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that as many as 600 million people in the world fall ill every year after eating contaminated food and 420,000 of these people die. U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates for those numbers in the U.S. are 48 million people (1 in 6 Americans) get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die each year from foodborne diseases, This is a significant public health burden that is largely preventable. Read more

Training Course for FSMA-PCQI, 25-27/09 (khoá đào tạo FSMA-PCQI, bằng tiếng Việt)

This is the FDA-recognized standardized curriculum to become a PCQI, as established by the Preventive Controls Rule of the FSMA.

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USDA, USTR Announce that Vietnam Reopens Market to U.S. DDGS Exports

(WASHINGTON, Sept. 6, 2017) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) today announced that the government of Vietnam has notified the U.S. that it will resume imports of American distillers dried grains (DDGS).  In December 2016, Vietnam suspended imports of U.S. DDGS after reported detections of quarantine pests in U.S. shipments.  Prior to the suspension, Vietnam was the third-largest market for U.S. DDGS, with exports valued at more than $230 million in 2016.  The resolution of this issue also opens the way for corn and wheat shipments, which were restricted due to previous treatment requirements.

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Why the U.S. imports tainted food that can kill you: The Hill

This week the CDC reported that at least 47 people were stricken with Salmonella, with one death, likely linked to papayas imported from Mexico. In the summer of 2016 came reports of hepatitis A tainted scallops sickening 292 in Hawaii. In that outbreak two died of liver failure complications. And, also in 2016, 143 people, mostly in Virginia, were also stricken with hepatitis A. This time the culprit was hepatitis A-tainted strawberries imported from Egypt.

While most food we consume is still produced in the United States, we rely on imports for some of our most nutritionally important but more risky commodities. And, imported food is increasingly taking a larger “bite” out of our food consumption.

We now import over 90 percent of our seafood, 50 percent of our fresh fruit and 20 percent of our vegetables. Canada, Mexico, China and India are our top food trading partners. In 2014, we imported nearly $50 billion of food from just those four countries. Imports from all countries have increased, and that is especially true for China and India. Read more

Full enforcement of USDA inspection of Siluriformes fish, including catfish, began Aug 2

USDA’s Food Safety and inspection Service’s plans to reinspect all shipments of imported Siluriformes fish and fish products, including catfish,  beginning on Aug. 2, one month earlier than originally scheduled, according to a Federal Register Notice published on July 3. Countries that want to continue to export siluriformes fish and fish products, including catfish, to the U.S. must submit a complete “Self-Reporting Tool” and supporting documentation to USDA/FSIS by Sep 1, 2017.
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U.S. importer received FDA warning letter to implement Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP) Regulation

An importer in Southern California is on notice from the FDA for failing to take required steps under the “Foreign Supplier Verification Program” (FSVP) to assure that the smoked salmon and mackerel it brings into the U.S. have been produced in accordance with U.S. food safety regulations. Read more

Vietnam food businesses registered for export to U.S. drastically reduced

On Jun 7, the Ministry of Industry and Trade organized a conference  on the structure of Vietnam’s export of food and beverages to the U.S.  Many businesses urgently said that they have fallen into the list of enterprises that do not meet the requirements for exporting to the US market while having a long history of exporting to the market for more than ten years. In addition, they did not receive any warning information from the authorities. In fact, new regulations were announced Oct 1 – Decc 31, 2016, and  applied from Jan 1, 2017., in just a few months from the end of 2016 to the beginning of 2017, the number of Vietnamese companies with valid FDA registration to export to the US market dropped from 1,845 companies down to only 806. Read more

Food Safety Modernization Act – Foreign Supplier Verification Program

The U.S. Food Safety Modernization Act is going into effect now. On May 30, 2017, a new regulation requiring U.S. food importers to identify their foreign suppliers and verify that they are using safe food processes and procedures became effective. But whether the industry will be in compliance remains highly uncertain. Read more