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Advancing Conformance With The Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards

Snyder, Clark
Yellowstone City-County Health Department
Start date
End date
The purpose of this project is to reduce the occurrence of foodborne illness in Yellowstone County. Thepurpose will be achieved by utilizing the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards(Program Standards) as an improvement tool to identify risk factors for foodborne illness and to improve theeffectiveness of inspections and intervention strategies to reduce the occurrence of risk factors.The project objectives are: (1) to measure the occurrence of foodborne illness risk factors in retail foodestablishments, (2) to evaluate trends over a period of time to determine progress, (3) to evaluate and improveintervention strategies designed to reduce the occurrence, (4) to improve uniformity of inspection practices, (5)to sustain improvement and achieve greater conformance with the FDA Voluntary National Retail RegulatoryProgram Standards and to share tools and strategies with other agencies.The first three objectives will be achieved by conducting a second risk factor study. Data will be analyzed totrack changes in the occurrence of risk factors and evaluate the effectiveness of interventions implementedafter the baseline study. New interventions will be developed and implemented following the second study.Interventions may include food safety training, educational campaigns, and process changes. Food SafetyInspection Officers (FSIOs) will be trained on intervention strategies to assure effective and uniformimplementation.The fourth objective, to improve uniformity of inspection practices, will be addressed by implementing a peerreview inspection program modeled after that used in King County Washington. Results will guide staff trainingto reduce inconsistencies. In addition, FSIOs will continue to be re-standardized every three years.The final objective is to sustain improvement and achieve greater conformance with the FDA VoluntaryNational Retail Regulatory Program Standards. A self-assessment completed in May 2017 indicated that fourof the nine Standards were fully met. This proposed project work will result in meeting the remaining standards.Strategies and tools will be shared via Food Shield and at the Pacific Region FDA Retail Food Seminar.By striving for greater conformance with the Retail Program Standards, we can reduce the occurrence of therisk factors for foodborne illness in our community, strengthen our relationships with the retail food industry,and use our resources more efficiently and effectively.
Funding Source
Food and Drug Administration
Project source
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Project number
Education and Training
Bacterial Pathogens
Natural Toxins
Viruses and Prions
Chemical Contaminants