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Ohio farmer comments on proposed FDA rules

Published Mar. 13, 2013 | Discuss this article on Facebook
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Osswald (Left at microphone) comments on the FDA's proposed produce safety rules at a public hearing in Chicago.

Ohio Farm Bureau State Trustee Lane Osswald from Preble County recently traveled to Chicago to comment on proposed produce food safety rules, at one of three public hearings, on behalf of Ohio farmers. Osswald’s family grows cabbage, bell peppers and zucchini for wholesale markets including restaurants, schools, hospitals, prisons and other similar institutions.

In his testimony, Osswald asked the FDA to consider:

- flexibility for different growing regions, and continued focus on practices and operations;

- the likely situation where a grower may have to integrate produce not grown on their own farm to fulfill orders or meet demand after crop failure or weather disaster;

- the importance that this rule not disadvantage any producer simply because of operation style;

- the economic burdens new regulation places on all growers;

- Ohio and many other states are disadvantaged by a shorter growing season over which to spread new costs of compliance;

- ensuring all regulation must be based on food safety research demonstrating positive results; and

- coordinating inspections or enforcement activities through a state lead agency to eliminate redundancies, and ensure proper funding is provided in exchange for a state’s time in enforcing federal programs.

Read Osswald’s full statement in the attachment listed below the photo above.

You can learn more about the proposed rules and if they would apply to your farm by taking a look at this FDA Overview and Coverage webpage. If you find that the rules would apply to you and you would like to comment on a specific part of the rules, or about the rules in general, you can do so on the FDA website. The comment period ends May 16.

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