Food safety concerns and issues and ways of mitigating them

Food, despite being the most important human need, is fraught with many risks and hazards. The food chain, which consists of activities that cover everything from the proverbial farm to fork, passes through many points at which a harm of any nature can happen. The chances of risks to the food safety chain are all the more amplified in this age of globalization, when food travels through many regions and continents from its source to its destination.

The UN’s Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) has identified five major issues with the food chain. These are:

o  Hazards of a microbiological nature

o  Residues left over by pesticides

o  Food additives

o  Chemical contaminants, such as pesticides; and

o  Adulteration.

Many other risks

Of late, this list has been extended to include genetically modified organisms, allergens, veterinary drugs residues and growth promoting hormones used in the production of animal products.

Further, other hazards to the food chain include antibiotic resistance, demographics, meaning the proper distribution of food to the right people, the effects from the environment, and foodborne illnesses. This clearly shows that there is no dearth of sources of hazards in the food chain.

Defining food quality and food safety

While these are the commonly identified areas of the food chain that are considered hazardous; a more fundamental issue for food specialists is in defining food quality and food safety. These have different meanings for food specialists. Identification and elimination of all the hazards that make food injurious to the eater is part of food safety. Anything that gives and enhances the value of the food to the consumer is considered a characteristic of food quality. Food quality can also include any negative traits such as spoilage, discoloration, rotting and stench, all of which affect the quality of food.

In view of the nature and expanse of the points at which hazards can happen in the food chain; it is necessary that there has to be a global cooperative effort aimed at checking these and ensuring food safety. Ensuring food safety at the local, national and global levels requires a high level of cooperation and coordination, not to speak of the sheer perseverance needed for it. A number of safety and quality standards have been in place for the food industry to adhere to. Compliance with these regulations goes a long way in eliminating a number of hazards and ensuring the quality and safety of food along the chain.

A webinar on food safety

All the aspects of food safety will be covered at a webinar that is being organized by Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance.

Michael Brodsky, who brings varied and deep experience of over four decades into food safety aspects and holds the position of lead auditor/assessor in microbiology for the Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation (CALA) and is a member of the Board of Directors among many others, will be the speaker at this webinar. To understand all the aspects of food safety from the expert, please register for this webinar by visiting

http://www.compliance4all.com/control/w_product/~product_id=501352LIVE?Wordpress-SEO

Thorough understanding of all the aspects of food safety

At this webinar, Michael will address the complexity of defining safe food. All the important aspects of food safety, such as the changing nature of foodborne and food transmitted pathogens, new and emerging analytical technologies and the influence of demographics and geography on the changing landscape, and the roles and responsibilities for various stakeholders along the food chain in identifying and eliminating foodborne illnesses and contamination will be discussed at length.

With the world’s population burgeoning, especially in areas that are vulnerable to food safety issues, emerging pathogens present a set of new challenges to everyone in the food chain, such as food producers, food safety regulators, consumers and food microbiologists. Michael will highlight these issues and explain what responsibilities each of us has in ensuring that food is safe and what cooperative efforts we must all put towards attaining this objective.

Michael will cover the following areas during this webinar session:

o  Defining food safety

o  Risks and realities

o  Statistical reliability

o  New and emerging analytical technologies

o  The multiplicity of interacting factors

o  The changing landscape

o  Mitigating the risks.

FDA holds Cosmetic Manufacturers & distributors responsible for the safety and quality of their Cosmetics

Testing cosmetics before the FDA does it is a sound business strategy for cosmetic manufacturers. This is why: Cosmetic manufacturers and distributors are responsible for upholding the quality and safety standards set out by the FDA. This is a legal requirement on the part of players in the cosmetics industry. In order to ensure compliance with its safety and quality standards; the FDA routinely carries out its own analysis of cosmetics.

The regulatory agency is all the more proactive in carrying out its quality and safety checks on products that carry potential problems. It comes down heavily on such manufacturers by alerting consumers about the problem product. It also carries out regulatory and enforcement actions against such products and companies.

Another reason for which cosmetic products need to be tested thoroughly for their quality and safety is that although the FDA does not require cosmetic products and ingredients, except color additives, to get approved by the FDA before they enter the market; it has laws on how these cosmetic products need to be regulated in interstate commerce. This makes it necessary to comply with the FDA’s standards on cosmetic safety and quality.

One of the lines of defense for such companies is to carry out testing of their product themselves before they start selling it in the market. This is a sound practice that helps companies in the cosmetic industry avoid punitive actions from the FDA.

Getting the testing practice right

But then, this practice has to be inculcated in the right manner, or it serves little purpose. The ways of implementing the right methods for testing the quality and safety standards of cosmetics before they are distributed into the market will be taught at a webinar that is being organized by Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance.

At this webinar, the speaker is Rachelle D’Souza, who, as CEO of Regulatory Heights Inc., has successfully licensed various medical and consumer products and facilities with international regulatory authorities/agencies for multinational and start-up companies. The major learning Rachelle will offer at this webinar is the different ways by which to carry out practices that are prevalent in the cosmetic industry to help avoid enforcement actions from the FDA.

To gain knowledge of avoiding punitive actions from the FDA; please register for this webinar by visiting  Cosmetic Testing

Guidance on the FDA’s expectations

The important learning that this webinar will offer is that it will offer thorough guidance to cosmetic manufacturers and distributors, as also other entities such as color additive manufacturers and analytical and microbiological laboratories, on the recommendations and requirements that the FDA has with regard to the safety and quality testing of cosmetics.

In line with this topic, Rachelle will help participants explore important areas in this webinar, such as FDA considerations for microbiological testing, animal testing, potential contaminants, nanomaterials in cosmetics, cosmetic good manufacturing practices (GMP) compliance testing, shelf life/expiration dating, select cosmetic ingredients and color additive batch certification.

The content of this webinar is suited to act as a proper guidance to those involved in the various aspects of cosmetics, such as Cosmetic Manufacturers, Cosmetic Distributors, Cosmetic Ingredient Manufacturers, Color Additive Manufacturers, and Analytical and Microbiological Laboratories involved in Cosmetic/Cosmetic Ingredient Testing. They will benefit in a big way by learning about areas of FDA cosmetic regulations that Rachelle will explain at this session. She will cover the following areas at this webinar:

o  Microbiological Testing for cosmetics

o  Animal Testing & Cosmetics

o  Potential Contaminants

o  Color Additives & Batch Certification

o  Select Cosmetic Ingredients: Prohibited & Restricted Ingredients

o  Shelf Life/Expiration Dating

o  Nanomaterials in Cosmetics

o  Cosmetic Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) Compliance Testing.

Understanding steam sterilization microbiology

Steam sterilization is an important means of killing microorganisms in microbiology. Sterilization is the method of removing all viable organisms from a source in a defined environment. Microorganisms are said to be dead when they are rendered ineffective by a decrease in their population in an environment. When they are unable to grow within their environment; they are considered dead. They don’t usually die the moment they are exposed to an agent that kills them.

Autoclaving is an important device used in steam sterilization microbiology. In addition to being used for sterilizing many devices such as surgical instruments, laboratory items and many more; an autoclave is also used in microbiology to sterilize microorganisms that cannot be killed by normal methods such as boiling and the use of strong detergents.

Autoclave qualification

The methods of steam sterilization microbiology need to be understood thoroughly, since they need to comply with regulatory requirements. An autoclave needs to be qualified for its performance, the basis for which is a proper grasp of stream sterilization microbiology.

Sterilization process parameters need to be laid out as a basis for conducting autoclave performance qualification studies. Exact standards of steam sterilization need to be met, whether it is to qualify a new autoclave installation or to continue maintenance of existing equipment.

A learning session on these methods

The ways of doing this will be the learning a webinar from Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance, will be offering.

The speaker at this webinar is Danielle DeLucy, who owns ASA Training and Consulting, LLC, which provides pharmaceutical and biologics-based companies with training and quality systems assistance that helps them meet regulatory compliance. To understand the way by which your steam sterilization microbiology needs to meet regulatory compliance standards; please enroll for this webinar by visiting Steam Sterilization Microbiology

A full description of steam sterilization microbiology

Since successful autoclave Performance Qualification depends on a thorough grasp of steam sterilization microbiology; Danielle will describe the steam sterilization mechanism as it relates to bacterial cells and endospores. She will explain the process and key terminology, because understanding these fundamentals is critical to develop a successful autoclave sterilization process.

She will offer regulatory references requiring use of air removal verification tools, chemical indicators and biological indicators. She will also explain definitions for sterility assurance level, accumulated lethality, temperature mapping and biological verification.

Quality Assurance Managers, Supervisors, Validation personnel and Sterility Assurance personnel will find this course useful. It is to meet the following objectives that this webinar is being organized:

o  Steam sterilization on a microbial level

o  Autoclave Performance Qualification expectations

o  Regulatory and GMP requirements for steam sterilization

o  Process verification tools for use in an autoclave Common questions, problems and cGMPs.

Danielle will cover the following areas at this webinar:

o  Autoclave Performance Qualification expectations

o  Regulatory and GMP requirements for steam sterilization

o  Validation tools for use in an autoclave

o  Common questions, problems and cGMPs.

Implementing the Final FDA FSMA Rules on the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Foods

The FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) rule on Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food, which was passed on April 6, 2016, has now become final. This is the latest in a series of as many as seven rules that have been getting legislated from January 2013 with the intention of creating a modern, risk-based framework that ensures food safety.

This Final Rule has, like its predecessors, been created with the goal of preventing practices that create risks in food safety during transportation. Failure in properly refrigerating food, not ensuring sufficient and thorough cleaning of vehicles between loads, and inability to protect food fully and properly are some of these risks and methods. In its efforts at preventing food contamination during transportation, the FDA seeks to enhance its endeavor of protecting foods “from farm to table”.

Takes off from the 2005 Sanitary Food Transportation Act

The foundation to this Rule can be found in the safeguards the FDA envisioned in the 2005 Sanitary Food Transportation Act (SFTA). Following the FDA’s identification of transportation as a major source of food contamination; it has formulated its seven Rules targeting this particular activity. It seeks to address the concerns of contamination during transportation and has brought about this regulation to ensure that foods are safe during transportation.

Towards facilitating this goal; the Final Rule on sanitary transportation of human and animal food establishes sanitary practices requirements which shippers, loaders, carriers by motor or rail vehicle, and receivers involved in transporting human and animal food have to comply with.

Learn the ways of complying with the Final Rule

How do food transporters ensure that they mitigate the risk associated with their business, and how do they comply with this regulation? The ways of doing this will be the learning a webinar from Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance, will be offering.

This webinar is part of three training sessions that are required for transporters as part of the Final Rule of April 6, 2016. Trainings for the subsequent two sessions will be carried out later. In this session, which is entitled “Responsibilities of the Carrier Under the Final Rules”, John Ryan will cover the training requirements that all carrier personnel engaged in food transportation operations, except those that are exempt, are required to establish. As part of this requirement, they are further required to earn training certificates for the following:

o  Responsibilities of the carrier under the final Sanitary Transportation rules

o  Awareness of potential food safety problems that may occur during food transportation

o  Basic sanitary transportation practices to address those potential problems.

To understand the ways of implementing the Final Rule, please register for this webinar by visiting Final FDA FSMA Rules

Everyone involved in food transportation activities, such as Drivers, Managers, Compliance personnel, Buyers, Supervisors, Internal food safety team members, Maintenance Personnel, Loaders/Unloaders, Inspectors, Trainers and Food Shippers will find this session very useful.

John will cover the following areas at this webinar:

o  Understand US FDA FSMA Law for the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Foods

o  Understand changes from the proposed FDA FSMA rules

o  Know the different requirements for shippers, carriers and receivers

o  Know who is exempted

Understand the FDA waiver requirements.

Clarifying the misconceptions about DMFs and Quality Agreements

A Drug Master File (DMF) is a file that lists the materials and processes that have gone into a drug. This submission is made by manufacturers of drugs to the FDA, and has to contain everything that goes into the drug, and has to include not only the materials and the processes; but also confidential information pertaining to the facilities in which the drugs are manufactured. All the inputs that have gone into not just the manufacturing, but also the packaging and storing of all human drugs made by the manufacturer, have to be entered in the DMF.

The FDA’s line of thinking is that all this information has to be provided to it so that it will help the manufacturer protect any confidential or proprietary information relating to its manufacturing process by keeping them with the FDA.

The FDA has issued a number of guidances to the industry about the way in which these submissions have to be made in both paper and electronic format. It has detailed information about how each of these is to be made. This format is set to change, because from May 18, 2018; only DMF submissions made in electronic format under the FDA’s Electronic Common Technical Document (eCTD) will be accepted, and the FDA will reject any DMF submissions made in paper format from that date onwards.

The Quality Agreement

A Quality Agreement (QA) is an important document that goes some way in ensuring the quality of drugs and preventing their contamination and counterfeiting. It is an agreement made between the manufacturers of API or intermediate manufacturers and their suppliers to ensure that the responsibilities for assuring the safe supply of materials are safe to be accepted for pharmaceutical use.

A Quality Agreement stipulates and clearly defines the responsibilities of both the manufacturer and the supplier, and states their respective obligations towards ensuring the quality and safe supply of the API or intermediate user. The Quality Agreement is a major component of the API or intermediate user’s supplier qualification program.

While this is a laudable intention, it has a side effect: Misunderstanding between manufacturers of pharmaceutical or biologic finished products on the one side, and supplier and contractors, on the other, because the FDA states that all the proprietary information is to be stored with it only.

This has given way to considerable confusion and misconception about the nature of the DMF submission and the way in which the Quality Agreement has to be drafted. Yet, it is important to clear the misconceptions and misunderstandings at an earlier stage of the agreement, because proper understanding of the requirements and responsibilities alone can ensure the proper quality of the final product.

The aim of a webinar that is being organized by Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for the areas of regulatory compliance, is to clear the many misunderstandings between the supplier and the manufacturer.

The speaker at this webinar is Robert J. Russell, who is President of RJR Consulting, Inc., which is engaged in assisting the pharmaceutical, medical device and biotech industries in understanding and complying with International Regulations affecting compliance, new product development, manufacturing and Quality Assurance. To have misconceptions in the various areas of DMF and QA clarified, please register for this webinar by visiting Regulatory and Processing Responsibilities

This training will combine Quality Agreement and DMF, and is meant for suppliers and drug product manufacturers developing these arrangements together. Robert will discuss the advantages of this system.

He will offer understanding into the nature of the misunderstanding that has arisen over the years. The main reason for this is the lack of a thoroughly drafted agreement that delineates roles and responsibilities. The speaker will explain how this can be corrected by clearly stating the means for resolution of issues.

This will be the agenda of this webinar:

o  What are DMFs?

o  The rationale and preparation process for DMFs

o  DMF Preparation: What you need and why you need it

o  FDA Review: How FDA reviews DMFs and why

o  Components Associated with a DMF

o  Japan DMFs

o  European DMFs

o  Canadian DMFs

o  Change control and maintenance: Why accurately maintaining your DMFs is important

Meeting equipment validation requirements from the FDA and EU

Putting in place a program for calibrating and maintaining test and measurement equipment is a regulatory requirement from both the FDA, under 21 CFR Part 210 and 211, and relevant EU regulations. Both these agencies have regulations that require this program from manufacturers.

The purpose of this equipment validation program is to ensure these among others:

o  The equipment is reliable and is capable of performing the use to which it is being put

o  It is safe

o  It ensures free flow of work

o  Keeps costs of preparing it down

o  Ensures that the company does not spend too much on premature replacements.

These are some of the ingredients of this program:

o  Intervals

o  Scheduling

o  Specific procedures

o  Limits of accuracy/precision, and

o  Remedial action when the equipment does not meet established requirements.

Main aspects of equipment validation

Equipment validation has to be done from these three perspectives:

o  Installation Qualification (IQ)

o  Operational Qualification (OQ)

o  Performance Qualification (PQ)

o  Change control & Requalification

Validation before and after use

Validation has to be done prior to use. An equipment must be validated to ensure that it the product being produced meets its specifications. In addition, there are ways of validating equipment that are already in use.

A thorough and proper understanding of how to plan and implement a program for the validation and maintenance of test and measurement equipment will be the learning a webinar that is being organized by Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance, will offer.

This webinar will have Jeff Kasoff, a senior Regulatory Affairs professional, who has more than 30 years in Quality and Regulatory management; as speaker. Jeff brings the rich experience of having implemented and overseen quality system operations and assured compliance, at all sizes of company, from startup to more than $100 million in revenue. To gain the benefit of insightful learning from this highly experienced Regulatory Affairs professional, please register for this webinar by visiting Calibration and Preventive Maintenance

All the aspects of calibrating and maintaining test and measurement equipment

At this webinar, Jeff will give participants an understanding of how to calibrate and maintain test and measurement equipment. He will explain all the elements that go into it, namely intervals, scheduling, specific procedures, limits of accuracy/precision, and remedial action in the event that the equipment does not meet established requirements. In addition, he will also offer an understanding of the various ways by which to validate equipment already in use.

Professionals holding positions in companies, whose work involves equipment/process development, such as QA management, Quality Engineering staff, R&D management, Engineering management, Production management, Manufacturing Engineering staff, Design engineers, Reliability engineers, Calibration technicians, and Maintenance personnel will find this session valuable.

Jeff will cover the following areas at this webinar:

o  Equipment Validation: Installation Qualification, Operation Qualification, and Performance Qualification

o  Preventive Maintenance Requirements

o  Calibration vs. Maintenance: When to use Which One?

o  Remedial Action for Out-of-Calibration Equipment

o  Use of Calibration Standards to Save Cost

o  Equipment Calibration Requirements: Scheduling, Use of External Services, and Documentation.

Why IEC 60825 certification cannot be substituted for 21CFR1040

With a few exceptions, it is necessary for manufacturers, system integrators and importers of lasers or laser containing products to implement best practices for compliance with FDA 21 CFR 1040. This is because The Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH) requests documentation using the current version of their Form 3632 Guide for Preparing Product Reports for Lasers or Products Containing Lasers for laser self-certification submittals, which have to comply with 21 CFR 1040. Per Section 1010.2c, certification has to be based on a test that meets the requirements set out in this standard and has to be in accordance with Good Manufacturing Practices.

Since the CDRH does not approve form 3632 reports or the products being reported; it is incumbent upon the manufacturer, system integrator or importer to assume responsibility for certification. However, if the FDA detects gaps or deficiencies in the applicant’s quality control or testing program; the CDRH is empowered to take actions that are of a very harsh nature. It may:

o  Ask the manufacturer to halt introduction of the product into the US until the faults are corrected

o  Require the manufacturer to start a corrective action program for products that have already been released into the market

o  Impose fines of up to $300,000 for non-compliance with the requirements laid out in 21 CFR 1040.

What are the consequences of recalls?

When laser products that the FDA determines do not meet the regulatory requirements are recalled, it can have serious consequences for the business. It invites lawsuits from the user of such products. This can result in monetary losses that eat into the business’ profits. It can also damage the company’s reputation, which is something that is very difficult to overcome and compensate for.

So, the ideal course to follow for manufacturers of laser products is to be compliant in letter and spirit with the regulations laid out in 21 CFR 1040. The ways of achieving this and implementing best practices for compliance with FDA 21 CFR 1040 will be the teaching a webinar from Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance, will be offering.

The speaker at this webinar is Tony Imm; a nationally recognized laser engineer with a background in medical device manufacturing, whose company, Laser Guardian LLC provides a wide range of laser safety and process support. To understand the ways by which to achieve compliance with FDA 21 CFR 1040 by implementing best practices; please register for this webinar by visiting Best Practices for Compliance with FDA 21CFR1040

Complete understanding of implementing best practices

Tony will give comprehensive understanding of the ways by which the test documentation system with the CDRH works. He will show how to generate form 3632 document, how to complete the form, what supporting data to attach with it and how, and then explain recommended methodologies to test and record the emission output and interlock performance of the laser systems. This session is extremely useful to those involved in working with laser products, such as Engineering Managers, Laser Engineers, Safety Manager, Safety Engineers, and personnel responsible for FDA communications.

Tony will cover the following areas at this webinar:

o  What is self-certification and when is it required

o  Methods for submitting a product report

o  Major sections of the product report

o  Why IEC 60825 certification cannot be substituted for 21CFR1040

o  What are best practices and why use them

o  Where to apply best practices and what they should encompass.