November 2016 marked the date when the FDA rolled out compliance policies for small and very small businesses to comply with FSMA (the Food Safety Modernization Act). FSMA was signed into law in 2009; small and very small food companies will be expected to be fully in compliance by September 2019, with one year of records. Therefore, in truth, small food manufacturers are expected to be in compliance in September 2018, beginning with published GMPs.
For some members of Next Gen PFMA, hiring an outside agency to help with compliance is the answer. For other members, a DIY method may be the right approach. Outside agencies have the advantage of staff dedicated to FSMA compliance; however, these companies are expensive and may not understand the small pet manufacturing, especially for Next Gen PFMA members producing Nutritionally DefensibleTM pet food. Therefore, tailor-made plans may cost extra, or risk being inadequate.
The DIY method is cost-effective but may be time prohibitive; the risk is key areas may be overlooked simply due to familiarity with the processes.
Next Gen PFMA will offer member companies assistance with FSMA compliance; PCQI trained staff will aid association members in publishing GMPs, identifying HACCP areas, reviewing required documentation, and other steps as needed.
Now is a great time to join Next Gen PFMA.