More than 120 people attended AFIA’s Regulatory Training Short Course that provided intensive training on how to work as a regulatory professional in the feed, ingredient and pet food industry. The day-and-a-half meeting concluded yesterday in Arlington, Va. The short course was designed for experienced regulatory directors, allowing them to interact with government officials and develop strategies to tackle the issues impacting their business.
This year, the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) was a large focus of the event. The landmark legislation, which was signed into effect Jan.4 of this year, will have long-term effects on the industry, a topic addressed by several of the speakers. This included opening speaker Eric Nelson, of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Veterinary Affairs (FDA-CVM), who spoke about compliance and upcoming FSMA inspections. A panel of AFIA members discussed how to prepare for the implementation, with representatives participating from Land O’Lakes Purina Feed, P&G Pet Care, Milk Specialties Global, Kemin AgriFoods North America, SPF North America, Provimi North America, and law firm Olsson Frank Weeda Terman Matz PC.
Leah Wilkinson, AFIA's director of ingredients and state legislative affairs, explained: “This is the second time AFIA has offered this event. In the ever evolving regulatory environment for the feed and pet food industry, it is imperative we have a clear grasp on the new regulations and what those regulations mean for daily operations of your facility.”
The changing landscape for getting new ingredients approved was also addressed at the training. Kent Kitade of the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) and FDA-CVM’s Sharon Benz discussed the evolving relationship between the two entities. The AAFCO ingredient review and approval process, always a hot-button topic in the industry, was discussed by panelists Richard Ten Eyck, AAFCO, Chad Risley, Ph.D., Lucta USA, and Dr. George Burdock of the Burdock Group.
AFIA speakers included president and CEO, Joel G. Newman, vice president of nutrition and feed regulation, Richard Sellers, and Leah Wilkinson. As he closed out the meeting, Sellers concluded, “AFIA hopes that this short course provides value to you, because regulatory challenges will only increase for the feed industry.”
The first-ever AFIA Regulatory Training was offered in 2009 and drew members and non-members alike. The bi-annual event is planned to next be offered in 2013.