Editor’s note: This is part of a series of articles leading up to the 20th annual Food Safety Summit. The event, from May 7-10 at the Donald Stephens Convention Center in suburban Chicago, includes certification courses; a trade show with exhibitors from industry, academia and government; an extensive list of seminars and panel discussions; and

CHICAGO — On a keynote panel mostly about the angst being felt around food safety, Costco’s Craig Wilson was the calmest guy in the house. And why not?

When Wilson, Costco Wholesale Corporation’s vice president for food safety, asked those in the 1,000-seat theater if any of them had Costco cards, half to two-thirds raised…

It’s not a question of if, but when, officials with the Food and Drug Administration will show up at any given food company for an unannounced inspection, with any violations outlined in a Form 483 that is handed off to company representatives as inspectors head out the door. While the Form 483 itself is essentially…

public health officialThis year, FDA will issue nearly 2,500 FDA Form 483s, and mail countless warning letters to food companies.  Sometimes, even the most subtle food safety failures can cause FDA to threaten to shut your facility down.  In the most recent examples involving producers of raw cookie dough, packaged ready-to-eat salads, seafood, hummus, and milk powder,…

Not so long ago, errant food industry managers and executives did not have to worry about going to jail. But they do now. The government once did not have any intentions, plans or strategies for obtaining convictions of food industry managers and executives. But they do now. Before 2010, a corporation with contaminated food that…