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FDA inspection fees may shock fresh produce industry

Fresh produce marketers and importers may be in for sticker shock when new food safety fees are implemented Oct. 1 by the Food and Drug Administration, some industry sources believe.

From The Packer:

Fresh produce marketers and importers may be in for sticker shock when new food safety fees are implemented Oct. 1 by the Food and Drug Administration, some industry sources believe.

Brunhilde Merker, chief executive officer of Bradenton, Fla.-based Scoring Ag Inc., said the FDA intends to fund implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act with the fees from the industry.

New rules relating to administrative detention and prior notice regulations, which took effect July 3 with the effective date of the food safety law, figure to prompt more industry fees, she said.

She said many food and agricultural trade organizations aren’t letting their members know the extent of industry obligations under the Food Safety Modernization Act and the steep fines they face if they are out of compliance.
The fees, announced by the FDA in early August, apply to domestic and foreign facility reinspections, failure to comply with a recall order and importer reinspections.

The FDA said the fees would be billed at a rate of $224 per hour for direct work of FDA staff, excluding foreign inspection travel costs. The agency plans to charge $335 per hour for direct staff work requiring travel to another country.

For more, see: FDA inspection fees may induce sticker shock
 

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