Docket Management
Docket: 02N-0278 - Bioterrorism Preparedness; Prior Notice of Imported Food Shipments, Section 307
Comment Number: EC -10

Accepted - Volume 2

Comment Record
Commentor Mr. Tim Perry Date/Time 2002-08-29 16:46:11
Organization APL, Ltd.
Category Company

Comments for FDA General
1. General Comments The U.S. Customs Service estimates that approximately 5.7 million sea containers enter the U.S. annually and nearly 50 percent of the value of all U.S. Imports arrive via sea cargo containers every year. The estimated number of shipments arriving in the U.S. each year exceeds 13 million. Each shipment is manifested and ocean carriers are required to present the import manifest to, among other Federal regulatory agencies, U.S. Customs, FDA, USDA, and Fish & Wildlife. It is imperative, given transportation logistics issues, the emphasis on security & trade economics, just-in-time manufacturing, and the electronic business environment, that the shipments move smoothly from origin to destination. The need for FDA and other Federal regulatory agencies to review cargo manifests is not an issue: timliness and coordination of review, targeting, and examination processes is crucial. To expedite the review and exam process it is imperative that the Federal regulatory agencies cooperate to establish a common information system within which they are able to communicate with the Ocean carriers, brokers, importers, and other key Trade participants. In the current environment, although the AMS (Automated Manifest System) is in active use at U.S. Customs, this paperless review and targeting system is underutilized by all other agencies. Likewise, there are unilateral moves among the Federal agencies to establish their own 'stand alone' review/cargo system. It is not only to the encouragement of the cargo delivery system and international economics but to the enhancement of the work of the Federal regulatory agencies to work toward a common and secure electronic system. Cooperative development and use of a secure Federal cargo review system would be to the benefit of the Federal agencies as well as to the Trade community.

EC -10