FDA Sampling Assignment Update Identifies Cyclospora in Herbs

A risk-based, preventive approach to food safety is at the core of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). For many years, FDA has used product sampling and testing as one tool to better characterize microbial risk. Beginning in 2014, the agency began developing a new, more robust approach to sampling assignments to assess microbial contamination in food commodities. Under this new approach, the FDA collects a statistically-valid number of samples of targeted foods over a shorter period of time (12-18 months) to help identify common factors among positive findings.The sampling design for each food takes into account the volume of the target food that is both imported and produced domestically, and the number of states/countries that produce the target food, to reflect what U.S. consumers are likely to find in the marketplace.

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