Tech-Enabled Traceability - Core Element 1 of the New Era of Smarter Food Safety Blueprint
In a complex and global food system, it is critical to protect consumers from contaminated products by being able to rapidly identify their source and remove them from the marketplace as quickly as possible. This is a priority in both the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act and the New Era of Smarter Food Safety.
The ultimate goal in the New Era is to have end-to-end traceability throughout the food system, with firms voluntarily adopting tracing technologies. Harmonizing tracing activities to support interoperability is a priority, as is finding solutions that are achievable for companies of all sizes.
Low- or No-Cost Food Traceability Challenge
On September 13, 2021, FDA announced the 12 winners of the FDA New Era of Smarter Food Safety Low- or No-Cost Tech-Enabled Traceability Challenge launched as part of the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2010 (COMPETES Act). There were 90 submissions, with the winning teams representing the U.S., Canada, and New Zealand. Submitting teams also hailed from Australia, China, England, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, and Taiwan.
In May 2023, IFT released a report commissioned by the FDA that evaluates food traceability trends based on the 90 submissions from this challenge.
FSMA Final Rule for Requirements for Additional Traceability Records for Certain Foods
The FDA issued a final rule on food traceability designed to facilitate faster identification and rapid removal of potentially contaminated food from the market, resulting in fewer foodborne illnesses and/or deaths.
Smarter Food Safety Core Elements
New Era of Smarter Food Safety Blueprint
- Core Element 1: Tech-enabled Traceability
- Core Element 2: Smarter Tools and Approaches for Prevention and Outbreak Response
- Core Element 3: New Business Models and Retail Modernization
- Core Element 4: Food Safety Culture