Setting Our 2018 Food Safety Priorities Feb 05, 2018 By: Hilary Thesmar, PhD, RD, CFS, Chief Food and Product Safety Officer and Senior Vice President, Food Safety Programs FMI members are on the front lines of food safety. Food safety professionals in our industry interact daily with customers to answer food safety questions, train associates on food safety best practices, and work with local regulators to help ensure the safety of the food we sell. It’s a big responsibility and we rely on those food safety experts who are on the ground, day in, day out, to direct our priorities for the year ahead. Recently, members of the FMI Food Protection Committee (FPC) gathered to discuss and develop goals and action plans for the 2018 priority initiatives. This group includes food safety professionals from FMI retail and wholesale member companies committed to advancing food safety throughout the entire retail food industry. We engage in a systematic process with the FPC to determine the food safety priorities FMI will address in the year ahead. These initiatives mirror the top issues that the industry is facing in food safety and will be used to develop programs and materials to make a measurable impact in retail food safety. The 2018 Priority Initiatives are: Cleaning and Sanitation Practices Listeria Prevention at Retail Produce Safety Traceability Technologies Ill Food Workers Regardless if food is sold through brick-and-mortar or e-commerce channels, retailers and wholesalers are committed to protecting public health by focusing efforts on the greatest regulatory, technological and supply chain challenges. Through the formation of workgroups, retailers and wholesalers can address key areas to improve industry knowledge of our initiatives. The FPC plans to address these issues by collaborating with various organizations, associations, regulatory agencies, and subject matter experts in order to make advances in science and technology. These groups will develop collaborative food safety solutions and increase adoption of best practices to make a safer food supply. The FMI Food Protection Committee and the FMI Food Safety Board Committee have reviewed and approved the 2018 initiatives. The tools and resources developed by the FPC will be made available for all retailers and wholesalers to utilize to improve their food safety programs. For food safety resources previously developed by the FPC, visit the FMI Food Safety Resource Page.