Guidance for Industry: Evaluating the Safety of Flood-Affected Food Crops for Human Consumption

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The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has provided guidance for situations under which farms may be affected by flooding given current research-based information.

FDA’s guidance covers the following topics:

  • Defines flooding vs. pooled water (after rainfalls)
  •  Safety of food crops when floodwaters contacted the edible portions of the crops (surface & underground crops, crops with a hard outer skin or shell, and grains, nuts, corns, etc.)
  • Safety of food crops when floodwaters did NOT contact the edible portions of the crops
  • Assessment of Flood-affected Fields before Replanting, possible testing needed, and while crops are not in the fields
  • Additional Controls to Avoid Cross-contamination after Flooding

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This guidance represents the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) current thinking on this topic. It does not create or confer any rights for or on any person and does not operate to bind FDA or the public. You can use an alternative approach if the approach satisfies the requirements of the applicable statutes and regulations. If you want to discuss an alternative approach, contact the FDA staff responsible for implementing this guidance. If you cannot identify the appropriate FDA staff, call the telephone number listed on the title page of this guidance.

If you need assistance please contact  your local county Agent or Area Specialized Agents, Elena Rogers for the Western half of NC at (828) 352-2519, or Chip Simmons for Eastern NC  at (919)414-5632,