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  1. National Integrated Food Safety System (IFSS) Programs and Initiatives

Mutual Reliance Partnership

Mutual Reliance Banner of Family eating meal together

Mutual Reliance is a seamless partnership that enables FDA and states with comparable regulatory public health systems, as trusted partners, to rely on, coordinate with, and leverage one another’s work, data, and actions to meet the public health goal of a safe national food supply.

The purpose of this partnership is to improve industry compliance, address duplication of effort, drive efficiencies, and prevent or reduce human and animal foodborne illness outbreaks. 

By working toward an Integrated Food Safety System (IFSS), partners can coordinate food safety inspection efforts, share data, and respond to outbreaks more efficiently.  This collaboration includes:

  • Data exchange/information sharing
  • Work planning and risk prioritization/categorization, including inspection frequency mandates, and comparison and reconciliation of inventories
  • Inspection, compliance/enforcement, and corrective actions
  • Environmental assessment
  • Recall oversight and effectiveness/audit checks
  • Investigation of outbreaks and complaints
  • Sample collection and laboratory capacity, analysis, and reporting
  • Training of field staff
  • Industry and consumer education
  • Organizational resources and personnel
  • Development and monitoring of key Mutual Reliance metrics

The Mutual Reliance partnership will enable FDA to:

  • Work closely with state regulatory human and animal food safety programs to extend efforts to protect public health; 
  • Collaborate with states to develop and sustain a highly-trained workforce and build quality management systems and the infrastructure needed to meet national regulatory program standards; and
  • Acknowledge states’ successes in meeting national regulatory program standards.

The Regulatory Program Standards include the Manufactured Food Regulatory Program Standards (MFRPS) and the Animal Feed Regulatory Program Standards (AFRPS).

This collaborative effort provides opportunities for FDA and state partners to identify needs to better protect the public and leverage work from other regulatory programs.

States with Signed Letters of Intent

  • TBA in October

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