Update: November 16, 2013
The Food and Drug Administration has extended the comment period for food safety rules by an additional week because of reported technical problems with the website for submitting comments, regulations.gov. NH Congressional Representative Annie Kuster led a New England delegation in asking for the extension.
The deadline for making comments on the FDA’s proposed rules to implement the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) has been extended to Friday, November 22.
PLEASE speak up about these rules that will impact the small farms that supply our region with safe, fresh food. If you haven’t been following this issue, here are four sources of information about why you should care.
Pooh Sprague, who operates award-winning Edgewater Farm with his family, has written: “FSMA as currently written is destructive to diversified and small-scale agriculture.” (Read the whole post.)
A blogpost by the Co-op Food Stores says, ” Unfortunately, the proposed rules published by the FDA in January have the potential to destroy the food security of our region and put us at greater risk of experiencing foodborne illness.” (The post contains guidelines for how to comment on the proposed rules and a link to a video on the subject.)
The New England Farmers Union (NEFU) has analyzed the proposed rules to understand the impact on our agricultural economy. They concluded that ” the rules were designed for large-scale commercial operations and in many cases are incompatible with the scale of operations or agricultural practices in our region.” (Read the NEFU Summary of the rules and impacts.)
The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA) has written about how FSMA will affect you. (Find up-to-date posts and references collected here.)