Greg Fritz: PTI is a boondoggle - The Packer

Greg Fritz: PTI is a boondoggle

02/09/2010 08:37:23 AM
Tom Karst

The way traceability legislation seems to be going, the harder it's going to be for smaller companies like ours to survive. Only the big boys will have the capital to invest and the ability to absorb all the extra costs. Another major flaw in new food safety legislation might be exemptions from traceability compliance. If a farmer company is too small or local to be required to comply with the traceability standard, that is if it claims compliance with PTI would be overly burdensome, should they be permitted or trusted to offer their product to the public at all?

If the spirit of the national traceability standard is to protect the public from contaminated food, why should anyone be exempt? Traceability either has its merits or it doesn't. If it does, then everyone must comply as any food safety incident, be it limited or widespread in the scope, impacts our whole industry.

 If my company has to be forced to spend relatively exorbitant amount of money to comply with the national traceability standard, when we already had an excellent one in place, then all produce suppliers and receivers, be they farmers, repackers, wholesalers, retailers, restaurants, whatever, should have to do the same regardless of their size.

Again, food safety incidents and scares, be they real or imagined, affect our whole industry. The Government must not consider any produce traceability standard that would exempt any size company or farmer whose contaminated product could harm anyone and affect the whole industry. Thank you.

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