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What is the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)?

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10 Things Carriers Can Do Today for FSMA Compliance
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The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) is the most sweeping reform of U.S. food safety laws in more than 70 years. It aims to assure the safety of food throughout the supply chain through the introduction of new requirements to food manufacturers, processors, transporters and distributors.

Not sure where to start? You’ve come to the right place.

The FSMA legislation consists of seven new regulations. The key regulation around food transportation is the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food (sometimes referred to as SFTA - the Sanitary Food Transport Act), which defines requirements around...

Temperature control/tracking
For refrigerated products, every storage compartment must be pre-cooled and have a temperature monitoring device. Shippers must also define temperature conditions to be met throughout transportation.

Vehicles must be maintained in a sanitary condition, and are subject to inspection. Loading/unloading stations must have handwashing facilities.

Temperature certification/data exchange
A log of temperature conditions for the duration of the transportation must be provided to the receiver/shipper by the carrier upon request.

Carriers must provide basic sanitary transportation practice training to their personnel.

Data Retention
All records must be maintained for a period of 12 months.

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Who is Affected by FSMA?

FSMA affects almost everyone involved in the United States food supply chain.

Any food transportation company with revenues over $500,000 that serves as, shipper, loader, carrier or receiver must comply with the Sanitary Transport of Human and Animal Food (STHAF) rule:

  • A shipper is a person who arranges for the transportation of food in the United States by a carrier or multiple carriers. The shipper is responsible for communicating appropriate food handling requirements to the carrier. A person may be subject to these requirements in multiple capacities. For instance, the shipper may also be the loader and the carrier.
  • A loader is a person who loads food onto a motor or rail vehicle used during transportation operations.
  • A carrier is a person who owns, leases, or is otherwise ultimately responsible for the use of a motor or rail vehicle to transport food. The carrier is responsible for ensuring compliance with requirements during transport. Carrier does not include a person transports food while operating a parcel delivery service.
  • A receiver is any person who receives food after transportation, whether or not that person represents the final point of receipt for the food. A receiver may be a carrier or a shipper but not individual consumers or others who are not in the business of distributing food.

Questions about compliance? Email


Why FSMA and Why Comply?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 48 million people get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die each year from foodborne diseases. With proper food handling and transportation practices, these incidents are largely preventable.

With the Sanitary Transport of Human and Animal Food act (STHAF), the U.S. government has introduced new rules and regulations to assure the safety of food throughout the supply chain. These directives create new requirements for food manufacturers, processors, transporters and distributors that must be followed.

Besides the obvious benefits of compliance to customers and consumers, shippers and carriers who do not comply can be subject to penalties.

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When Do I Have to Comply?

The Sanitary Transport of Human and Animal Food was finalized on March 31, 2016. There is a 12-month adoption period with the final rule taking effect on March 31, 2017.

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How Can I Get Help?

There a variety of devices and applications designed for temperature monitoring and control of refrigerated vehicles. These solutions enable carriers to perform functions like pre-cool trailers, monitor for temperature violations and provide a complete temperature profile during the trip.

Specifically, with this technology, carriers can:

  • Maintain temperature control, adhere to thresholds across the entire journey and respond to temperature anomalies in real-time, ensuring safe food transport.
  • Pre-cool trailers remotely at the time required to ensure proper temperature and reduce fuel costs.
  • Easily deliver confirmation/proof of temperature control, trailer cleanliness, delivery acceptance and more with a form-based checklist while ensuring data retention.

To learn more about how your fleet can become FSMA compliant, contact us at