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FDA Issues 2017 Food Code Supplement

On December 23, 2019 the U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a Supplement to the 2017 Food Code. The Supplement to the 2017 Food Code is intended to keep the 2017 Food Code up-to-date. The Supplement contains modifications that reflect recommendations made by the 2018 Conference for Food Protection (CFP). Some of these changes will impact restaurants and foodservice operations. Below is an outline of the key changes.

The modifications made to the 2017 FDA Food Code resulted from recommendations made to the CFP for the following Issues:

  • 2016-I-033
  • 2018-I-003; 2018-I-007; 2018-I-013; 2018-I-021; 2018-I-029
  • 2018-III-005; 2018-III-016; 2014-III-019; 2018-III-026

The highlights that follow represent some of the significant modifications to chapters of the 2013 FDA Food Code contained in the Supplement. The changes to Food Code chapters also resulted in changes to the informational annexes to the Food Code. To download the complete Supplement in PDF form, please go to:

Supplement to the 2017 Food Code

Chapter 1 - Purpose and Definitions

  • Revised the definition of INTACT MEAT to clarify that beef products that are vacuum tumbled with solutions are not considered intact meats.
  • Revised the definition of MECHANICALLY TENDERIZED to be consistent with the USDA FSIS description of “mechanically tenderized” in the 2015 final rule titled Descriptive Designation of Needle- or Blade-Tenderized (Mechanically Tenderized) Beef Product (80 FR 28153). The rule established labeling requirements for raw or partially cooked mechanically tenderized beef products and clarified that products injected with a marinade or solution are considered mechanically tenderized.

Chapter 2 - Management and Personnel

  • 2-101.11 Amended Section 2-101.11 to add new paragraph (C) to address situations where the REGULATORY AUTHORITY has deemed a FOOD ESTABLISHMENT to pose minimal risk of causing, or contributing to, foodborne illness based on the nature of their operation and extent of FOOD preparation.

Chapter 3 - Food

  • 3-501.13 Amended paragraphs 3-501.13(A)-(C) to re-designate from a Core Item to a Priority Foundation (Pf) Item.
  • 3-501.19
    • Added new subparagraphs (B)(2)(a), (b), (c), (d) to 3-501.19(B)(2) to address a READY-TO-EAT produce or hermetically sealed FOOD that is rendered TIME/TEMPERATURE CONTROL FOR SAFETY FOOD upon cutting, chopping, or opening of a hermetically sealed container to begin at 21°C (70°F) or less and remain at 21°C (70°F) or less within a maximum of 4 hours.
    • Re-designated existing paragraphs 3-501.19(B)(2)(3) and (4) as new paragraphs 3-501.19(B)(3)(4) and (5) respectively.
  • 3-502.12 Amended to add new sub-paragraph (e)(iii) to address cook chill/sous vide products cooled to 5°C (41°F) in the sealed PACKAGE or bag as specified under §3-501.14 and subsequently cooled to 1°C (34°F) and moved to 5°C (41°F) holding temperature and held for a max of 7 days.

Chapter 4 - Equipment, Utensils, and Linens

  • 4-205.10 Amended §4-205.10 to clarify that EQUIPMENT that has been certified for conformance to an appropriate American National Standard is deemed to comply with the EQUIPMENT sanitation provisions contained in Parts 4-1 and 4-2.
  • 4-303.11 Amended §4-303.11 to add the risk designation of PRIORITY FOUNDATION ITEM that was inadvertently left off in the 2017 Food Code.

Chapter 5 - Water, Plumbing, and Waste

  • 5-203.11 Amended §5-203.11 to delete “paragraph (C)” and remove any reference to “paragraph (C)” in this section.

Chapter 8 - Compliance and Enforcement

  • 8-103.12 Amended §8-103.12 to include new paragraph (A) addressing maintenance of APPROVED VARIANCE at the FOOD ESTABLISHMENT; Existing paragraphs (A) and (B) renumbered to paragraphs (B) and (C).
  • 8-201.12 Amended paragraph 8-201.12(C) as part of the sentence was inadvertently left off in the 2017 Food Code.
  • 8-201.14
    • Amended §8-201.14 to delete subparagraph (C)(2) and add as new subparagraph (E)(2) that speaks to significant hazards for each critical control point.
    • Amended §8-201.14 to delete subparagraphs (C)(4-5) and merge into newly revised paragraph (D) to highlight documents that should be submitted as a separate document.
    • Amended §8-201.14 to redesignate existing paragraph (D) as the new paragraph (E).
    • Amended §8-201.14 to redesignate existing subparagraph (D)(5) as the new subparagraph (E)(5) and switched former paragraph (E)(4) to follow, so the sequence in new subparagraph (E) now follows the sequence of the HACCP Principles of monitoring, corrective actions and verification, where the subparagraphs are now sequenced as: 
      • (E)(4) establish monitoring procedures,
      • (E)(5) establish corrective actions,
      • (E)(6) establish verification procedures.
    • Amended §8-201.14 to redesignate existing paragraph (E) as new paragraph (F) and existing paragraph (F) as new paragraph (G).
  • 8-401.10 Amended subparagraph 8-401.10(B)(1) to reflect updated cross references due to the addition of a new paragraph (A) in §8-103.12.

Annexes

Amendments were made to Annex 2, Annex 3, and Annex 7.


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