AFDO Urges the FDA to Change its Food Recall Practices
According to an online news report published on natlawreview.com, the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO) published a white paper that outlines issued in FDA's recall practice and also proposes some solutions. The Association of Food and Drug Officials is a nonprofit organization consisting of lawmakers, stakeholders, regulators, and industry representatives that seeks to improve the country's food and drug industries.
According to the Association of Food and Drug Officials' report, the two primary recurring issues affecting how the FDA handles product recalls include:
- The public continues to get ill after the FDA's issuance of a recall notice, and
- FDA recalls are usually issued and publicized too late in order to avoid additional illness.
The Association of Food and Drug Officials' report explains each step of the FDA's food recall process and identifies the key issues as:
- There is a lack of consistency on when and how a product recall is initiated;
- There can be long delays and misclassification of product recalls;
- There appears to be a lack of urgency in reporting pending recalls to states;
- There may be a lack of training on regulator expectations during a product recall;
- There could be a lack of meeting recall audit checklist deadlines;
- The might be a lack of communication between the FDA and state authorities; and
- There seems to be a lack of clear lessons learned once a recall has concluded.
To correct these issues, AFDO is recommending that FDA implement the following changes:
Communication - Improved communication between all stakeholders by utilizing artificial intelligence and other technological solutions.
Culture - Improve the FDA's culture by creating a culture in which recalls are treated as public health emergencies and changing federal statutes to allow for more free distribution of information.
Policy - Improve the FDA's policies by creating precise timelines for recall classification, alerts to state agencies, hazard examination, and assignment of recall audit checks.
Recall Management - Improve recall management by streamlining all recall decisions, improving the FDA's organizational structure, and creating metrics to ensure that timeframes are met.
Training - Improve and increase training on recall processes for both regulators and the industry affected by a recall.
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