Since 2000, U.S. lawmakers have implemented several major regulations related to sanitation in food facilities.
Under the Sanitary Food Transportation Act of 2005, the FDA prescribes sanitary practices for food being transported by motor vehicle or rail.3 The Code of Federal Regulations says that foods should be stored and transported “under conditions that will protect food against physical, chemical, and microbial contamination as well as against deterioration of the food and the container.”4
The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2011, also affects sanitation by focusing on preventing contamination, rather than responding to an existing contamination.5 As part of this law, food facilities that must register with section 415 of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act are generally required to comply with certain risk-based preventive controls and to follow Current Good Manufacturing Practices.6
Each facility’s sanitation program will look different, depending on the size and type of facility, as well as the regulations it must follow.
An effective program should include the following:
- Scheduled daily and periodic cleaning
- Written sanitation procedure to explain how sanitation tasks should be accomplished
- Training to help personnel understand the program and carry it out correctly
- Chemical use policy, and instructions for choosing and using cleaning chemicals properly
- Inspections to check on the cleaning
- Validation to demonstrate the program’s effectiveness
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