On March 1, 2017, SGS hosted a panel of experts on Managing Global Supply Chains under FSMA – Challenges, Opportunities and Strategies, at the 2017 GFSI Conference in Houston.

The session was an opportunity to explore the impact of FSMA on global supply chain management practices and innovative solutions for compliance and transparency. Moderated by Hank Karayan, SGS FSMA Program Director, this session drew on the expertise of four panelists:

  • Donald Prater, FDA’s Acting Assistant Commissioner for Food Safety Integration
  • Michael Taylor, former FDA Deputy Commissioner for Foods and Veterinary Medicine
  • Chris Morrison, CEO of Transparency-One
  • Nicola Colombo, CEO of C-LABS


FSMA is considered the most sweeping reform of the US food safety system. It shifts the industry’s focus from responding to contamination to preventing it. On the food safety side, there have been major shifts on multiple levels with FSMA – from revising Good Manufacturing Practices to Preventive Controls, integrating food fraud and, expanding the notion of food supply to include US and non-US facilities supplying ready-to-eat food and produce, as well as ingredients and raw material into the United States.

On the other hand, FSMA coincides with Industry 4.0 and the emerging innovative automation technologies. The current trend is therefore shaping a food industry with less human intervention, regulated by compliance policies.

The Challenges

The journey to compliance starts with access to comprehensive information that is relevant to the product, and the markets the product is intended for. Companies supplying to and sourcing from multiple countries also face the additional challenge of accessing all relevant global data and mapping regulatory requirements across geographies.

The abundance and variety of data relevant to sourcing could become a hurdle for facilities implementing the supply chain management components of FSMA. The regulation requires hazard analysis and identification of supply chain preventive controls among others. In other words, understanding and analyzing product-specific risks that can be mitigated through proper supply chain management measures.

A New Look Into Supply Chain Management

The rise in supply-chain related recalls is pushing regulators to look for effective measures that transcend the traditional one-up, one-down model. In the spirit of the prevention of contamination called for by FSMA, it is implied that in order for a food safety system to be effective, all constituents of a supply chain should have proper programs in place. As a result, companies have been quick in adopting the preventive rules model in their supply chain verification and audit programs, thus making the supply chain requirements that are applicable to them, also applicable to their suppliers.

Compliance Through Innovative Solutions

Thanks to our diverse panel of experts, the audience was exposed to various aspects of regulation and innovation. The panelists could draw a clear correlation between compliance and innovation, while showcasing the latest technological solutions for supply chain transparency and smart compliance data management systems. Later, the panelists provided further insight into related topics by responding to questions from the audience at a Q&A session.

Read other Hot Source articles >
Subscribe to Hot Source >

For the complete range of SGS FSMA services and support visit SGS US FDA Safety Modernization Act.

For more information, please contact:

Hank Karayan
Global FSMA Program Director
t: +1 514 402 5810

< Back to FSMA in the News page