FDA Announces Agricultural Water Compliance Dates

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a statement regarding the FSMA Produce Safety Rule’s agricultural water requirements. FDA has introduced a final rule to formally extend agricultural water compliance dates for large farms to January 2022, small farms to January 2023, and very small farms to January 2024. The delay is giving the agency time to factor in the diversity of how farmers source water used in growing, harvesting, packing, and holding produce. FDA comments, “We need to ensure that standards are strong enough to protect public health, but practical enough to be effectively implemented on farms.” In order to accomplish this, the FDA statement says, “We look forward to continued engagement with stakeholders in the coming months as we further consider the path forward on agricultural water.”