The Packer

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The Packer is the fresh fruit and vegetable industry's leading source for news, information and analysis. The Packer has been reporting every week on the produce industry since 1893. ThePacker.com serves fresh fruit and vegetable growers, packers, and shippers; produce retailers; foodservice distributors; fresh-cut processors; wholesale produce distributors, and allied product and service providers.

Latest Articles

(This article by Tom Karst, national editor of The Packer, was first published Oct. 19, 2014, and is reposted here with his permission.) ANAHEIM, CA—The last word on food safety regulations for the produce industry won’t be written next year, even though the Food and Drug and Administration (FDA) has committed to publish final versions of the produce safety and preventive controls rule for food facilities next year. FDA officials speaking at an Oct. 17…
(This article by Tom Karst, national editor of The Packer, was first published Aug. 26, 2014, and is reposted here with permission.) The U.S. Food and Drug and Administration’s new food safety regulations aren’t the only changes facing fresh produce marketers, but the coming rules likely will be the most far-reaching, Robert Brackett believes. In a talk called, “Food Safety Issues on the Horizon: Thinking Differently,” Brackett, a former FDA official and now vice president…
(This May 23, 2014, opinion column by Tom Karst, national editor of The Packer, is republished here with permission.) Is there any way to overcome the distinction of being tabbed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a “high-risk” food? Perhaps one fanciful marketing tack to consumers would go something like this: “Sure, our much-loved commodity X is called ‘high risk’ by FDA. But, it should be pointed out, it is also ‘high…
The unwritten rule in the produce industry is that a company should not market its product as safer than a competitor’s. The thinking is that once consumers get it in their heads that a fruit or vegetable is more safe, that means another is less safe, and then maybe they’ll avoid the commodity or category altogether. But what if your company or growing region has a strong food safety record, drafted best practices documents, followed…