Regulatory Cooperation Council – Food Safety Work Plan 2015

Regulatory area to be addressed

Food Safety

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), Health Canada and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will finalize the assessment of each other's food safety systems (excluding meat, poultry and eggs products) and establish a food safety systems recognition arrangement based on the results. The exchange of food safety information will be increased to help both countries make informed risk-based regulatory decisions. As the FDA and the CFIA implement their modernized food safety rules and regulations, they will work together to ensure that their systems deliver comparable public health outcomes and reduce unnecessary duplication wherever possible.

Department/Agency
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U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

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Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA)

Food Safety Systems Recognition

The FDA and the CFIA will establish and maintain reciprocal recognition of each other's food safety systems. FDA and CFIA will undertake joint activities to implement the Canada – FDA Food Safety Systems Recognition Arrangement. Such activities will aim to enhance responses to food safety issues and food safety risk management approaches and provide a high level of public health protection in relation to food safety assurances for consumers in the U.S. and Canada.

Planned initiatives and sub-deliverables by date
Planned initiatives and sub-deliverablesDate

Establish Food Safety Systems Recognition

  • Finalize and sign the Canada-FDA Food Safety Systems Recognition Arrangement that offers benefit for public health, consumer protection, and trade. These benefits will include the use of systems recognition as an important tool for enhancing the safety of imported food.
Fall 2015
  • Establish Joint Communications Approach for Canada-FDA Food Safety Systems Recognition
Fall 2015
  • Publish the Food Safety Systems Recognition Assessment Reports and the Canada-FDA Food Safety Systems Recognition Arrangement
Fall 2015
  • CFIA and FDA to develop respective implementation guides/plans for Food Safety Systems Recognition to identify the steps needed to enhanced reliance on each other's oversight.
  • Activities in the plan may include, as applicable, review and adjustment of admissibility IT systems and risk based inspection frequencies, operations manuals and procedures, guidance/training for staff, and update website information on systems recognition to keep stakeholders informed on this initiative.
Late 2015

Maintain Food Safety Systems Recognition

  • Review current practices of information exchange on food safety regulatory and scientific issues and identify any gaps
Late 2015 – ongoing
  • At the meetings of the Joint Committee on Food Safety (spring and fall) the agencies will:
    • Collaborate on Food Safety modernization, rules, and regulations, to better understand respective policy objectives and enhance consistency of approaches, as appropriate
    • Identify emerging issues of common interest related to food safety and, as feasible, develop coordinated approaches to address issues
Ongoing

Stakeholder Communication

  • Conduct national and binational stakeholder outreach to communicate Canada – FDA Food Safety Systems Recognition
Late 2015
  • Engage with stakeholders through joint conference calls or webinars outlining progress on the work plan
Ongoing

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