ROSEMONT, Ill., Dec. 23, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. Foodservice, one of America's leading foodservice distributors, today commended the U.S. Congress for passing the Food Safety Modernization Act. The legislation updates the FDA's oversight of the nation's food supply, increases the frequency of FDA inspections and gives the agency the ability to issue a recall. The Act also increases the rate of food processing plant inspections, boosts access to production and distribution records, and establishes a tracking system so if an outbreak does occur, the source of the contamination can be quickly located and contained.
"While the Act is an important step forward in further protecting America's food supply, it exempts small food producers from some regulations and oversight," said Jorge Hernandez, senior vice president of food safety and quality assurance, U.S. Foodservice. "This could raise doubts about the integrity of some channels of the food supply chain. It is therefore critical that all food producers, large and small, continue working in good faith to adhere to the highest standards of food safety throughout the harvesting, processing, distribution, storage, handling and preparation phases. We must continue to work hard each day to earn the public's trust and confidence."
U.S. Foodservice, a longstanding food safety advocate, has supported this legislation since the bill was introduced in March, 2009. The company is a founding member of the GS1 Foodservice Initiative to improve the traceability of food – from 'farm to fork'.
"As a responsible and trustworthy partner to our customers and suppliers, we view food safety as a business priority," Hernandez added. "We continuously conduct comprehensive reviews of our products and their distribution chains to identify and eliminate, or minimize to the greatest extent possible, the food safety risks along the way. We hope these new food safety regulations will encourage all levels of the food chain to create a similar food safety culture within their organizations."
About Jorge Hernandez
Jorge Hernandez is senior vice president, Food Safety and Quality Assurance for U.S. Foodservice. He is a sanitarian, a certified food safety instructor, a past FDA standardization officer and serves as a board member of the Produce Marketing Association (PMA), GLOBALGAP and the FS22000 board of Stakeholders. He is also a member of the NRA's Quality Assurance Executives Study Group, the Global Food Safety Initiative's (GFSI) Technical Committee, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Accreditation Committee and the Conference for Food Protection (CFP). Jorge also served as a scientific member of the National Egg Board's Food Safety Advisory Panel and the International HACCP Alliance Board.
About U.S. Foodservice
U.S. Foodservice is one of the country's leading foodservice distributors, offering more than 43,000 national, private label and signature brand items and an array of services to its more than 250,000 customers. The company proudly employs 25,000 associates in more than 60 locations nationwide who are poised to serve customers beyond their expectations. As an industry leader, with access to resources beyond the ordinary, U.S. Foodservice provides the finest quality food and related products to neighborhood restaurants, hospitals, schools, colleges and universities, hotels, government entities and other eating establishments. With approximately $19 billion in annualized revenue, the company is headquartered in Rosemont, Ill., and jointly owned by funds managed by Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, LLC and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. Visit www.usfoodservice.com to discover how U.S. Foodservice can be Your partner beyond the plate®.
SOURCE U.S. Foodservice