As part of the American University of Beirut FAFS (The Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences ) Lecture Series, Dr. Dima was invited to deliver an open lecture on “An overview of the Food and Drug Administration Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and its implications for food exporters” that took place on the 10th of October 2019.
About the lecture:
Foodborne disease is a significant burden worldwide. In the United States, it is estimated that 48 million people get sick, 128 000 are hospitalized, and 3000 die annually from contaminated food or beverages. Prompted by the increasing prevalence of imports, high-profile food outbreaks, food fraud, and emerging hazards, the U.S. Food Safety Modernization Act was signed into law in 2011, the first historical reform to the legislative landscape of the food and beverage industry in over 70 years. FSMA has made fundamental changes to U.S. food laws. It shifted the focus of food safety from reactive to preventive approach and gave the U.S. Food and Drug Administration explicit authority and broader prevention mandate to protect consumers’ health. Instead of relying only on port-of-entry inspection, FSMA emphasizes key regulations that span across the food supply chain. Among other modifications, it imposes new responsibilities on food importers to verify that their foreign suppliers of food for human and animal consumption meet applicable FDA safety standards to ensure the safety of food imported into the U.S.