The United Fresh Produce Association has asked for a longer comment period for parts of the proposed Food Safety Modernization Act from the Food and Drug Administration.

United Fresh asks for more time on food safety commentsSeveral provisions of the FDA’s produce safety and food facilities safety rules face a deadline of Feb. 15, and United Fresh has asked the Office of Management and Budget to extend that comment period, according to a news release from United Fresh.

“United is in the midst of a very exhaustive review process with our members,” David Gombas, United Fresh’s senior vice president of food safety and technology, said in the news release. “The proposed rules are part of a larger suite of rules that are all interrelated and will have far reaching effects on the industry.

“The request is consistent with the time needed to properly respond, especially given that three additional proposed rules, on Foreign Supplier Verification, Preventive Controls for Animal Feed, and Accredited Third-Party Certification, are scheduled to be released in the near future and will also impact the industry.”

United Fresh has working groups for the two proposed rules. The working groups will meet in coordination with FDA’s public food safety hearings February 27 in Washington, D.C., March 13 in Chicago, and March 26 in Portland, Ore., according to the release.