Q&A | Howard Popoola, Topco Associates LLC - The Packer

Q&A | Howard Popoola, Topco Associates LLC

04/02/2010 11:05:00 AM
Tom Karst

11:41 a.m. Tom: Where did you work before you came to Topco?

11:41 a.m. Howard: One step back was U.S. Foodservice for me. At U.S. Foodservice, I was responsible for food safety and quality for all of our exclusive branded suppliers. I always had a special place for produce, fruits and vegetables, fresh and processed. I worked a lot with the AMS of USDA stuff, for inspections and good agricultural practices.

11:42 a.m. Tom: What’s the answer to regulating food safety on smaller farms? Is it exempting smaller farmers, or a variation in regulation?

11:42 a.m. Howard: Unfortunately, when it comes to food safety, you can’t put a size to it. That’s my take. There is an old saying that one bad apple can spoil the whole bunch, because you don’t where the product might going or if it might be co-mingled. One small-sized farm could cause a lot of bad press and damage to an entire industry. To me, food safety should not be a competitive edge. The same standard should be applied across the board.

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