Ohio Department of Agriculture Division of Food Safety Project Summary/Abstract The goal of this proposal is to acquire the needed monetary support to achieve and maintain full conformance with Manufactured Food Regulatory Program Standards (MFRPS). Implementation the program's standards by Ohio Department of Agriculture, Division of Food Safety (ODA DFS) will enhance food safety by establishing a uniform, efficient, and effective regulatory program, which in turn, will result in the attainment of a safer food supply, whereby reducing incidence of food borne illness.. The first step began in August 2011 when ODA DFS added an option in our state contract to participate in the MFRPS. Currently ODA DFS is conducting a comprehensive self-assessment and developing an improvement plan for each standard. The improvement plans will bring ODA DFS into conformance with the FDA's food standards. Implementation of the improvement plans will require the addition of staff both long term and short term. A legal intern will be utilized to facilitate writing rules which will be in line with FDA's CFRs. A compliance/training officer position will be added in year three while field staff will be added in years three and five. In addition to staff ODA DFS will be developing and implementing a new database that will incorporate the entire inspection process. The database will encompass firm information;risk assessment;inspections;inspection notification;issuing of embargoes, voluntary destructions and notices;sampling;and tracking of all employee training. The database will be developed so that test results can be downloaded directly from our lab and the database will allow for sharing information with the FDA. ODA FS will also be strengthening our sampling surveillance program by sharing the cost of two new pieces of equipment for our lab. ODA DFS will continue to receive state funding at the current level as well as receiving revenue generated from licensing. These funding streams will allow the grant money to be used exclusively to bring the program into conformance to the FDA MFRPS.
Conformance to the MFRPS will allow Federal and State manufactured food regulatory programs to better direct their regulatory activities toward reducing foodborne illness hazards in food plants. Consequently, the safety and security of the United States food supply will improve.