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MIRC Facilitating Still Registration

Jan 01, 0001

MIRC Facilitating Still Registration

FSMA Requires Mint Stills Be Registered with FDA

Members of the Mint Industry Research Council can obtain a sample document to help register mint stills with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration by going to the MIRC website, www.usmintindustry.com.

The document includes protocols producers can follow to meet the law’s requirement of developing best-management-practices (BMPs)to help ensure food safety on a preventative level. The document was developed and is being distributed to MIRC members courtesy of Callisons. Producers will need to customize their BMPs for individual stills.

Registering mint stills is required under the Food Safety and Modernization Act (FSMA). It is recommended that producers register mint stills in time for this harvest season.

Operators of on-farm stills can register with the FDA at http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceRegulation/FoodFacilityRegistration/ucm2006831.htm.

Depending on the state, producers may need to register stills with both the state and the federal government. On its website, the MIRC has a list of contacts of food safety officials in the following states: California, Idaho, Indiana, Michigan, Oregon, Washington and Wisconsin.

There is no charge to register stills with the FDA, but there may be charges on a state level.

According to a directive from the Oregon Department of Agriculture, mint still operators will need to learn about and comply with the Current Good Manufacturing Practice portion of the rule, including components addressing personnel, plant and grounds, sanitary operations, equipment, warehousing and distribution and defect-action levels.

“Some examples of things that our staff would look for during inspections ...  include:  Is the equipment designed in a way that it can be kept clean? Does the facility have strategies in place to control pests and is there evidence of pests in the facility? Do employees of the facility know that they should stay home if they have certain symptoms (vomiting, etc.),” according to the ODA directive.

“We’re trying to get everything assembled so it is fairly turnkey, so not all of our growers are independently reinventing the wheel,” said MIRC Administrator Bryan Ostlund. “We are handing them, as best as we can, all of the tools they need to be compliant, and we want to thank Callisons for their help in this.”