Oser Communications Group

Produce Show Daily Oct 18 2014

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P ro d u c e S h o w D a i l y 5 9 S a t u rd a y, O c to b e r 1 8 , 2 0 1 4 MINIMIZING CROSS BORDER DELAYS Your field operations are producing the highest quality produce. Your sales department is bringing in the best price. Your transportation network is ready to quickly deliver your goods to the U.S. market. You've got complete control over these processes. Now there is only that pesky little thing called the border, which will deter- mine whether or not your goods will get to the customer on time in farm-fresh condition. All of your growing, sales and logistics efforts can come crashing down if your shipment is delayed for hours, days, weeks, or worse yet – refused admission into the U.S. Here are five areas where you can take control over delays when shipping your fresh produce to the United States: Documentation The quality of your export documents will determine to a large extent how U.S. Customs (CBP), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CBP Agriculture will treat your import ship- ments. Commercial Invoices should describe your product in detail, are required to be in the English language (or have an English translation), and can be in dollars or pesos, but must state which currency, with Country of Origin declared. The Manifest of Goods document is the regulatory responsibility of your car- rier, but be sure everything that is loaded onto the export conveyance matches exactly with your commercial invoice. A properly executed NAFTA Certificate of Origin document is required at the time of importation. This document can be completed on an annu- al basis, or for each shipment. If your fresh produce requires a phytosanitary permit or certificate doc- ument, it is imperative that all state- ments as to description, quantities and weights match exactly with your Commercial Invoice. Country of Origin While your individual produce items are exempt from Country of Origin marking, your packaging is not. Your shipment can be delayed to mark external packages, or be sent back to Mexico to be marked. Wood Packaging All wood packaging materials (pallets, crates, dunnage, etc.) arriving into the United States are required to have an ISPM-15 marking. Your shipment will be sent back to Mexico if the CBP Agriculture Cargo Inspector cannot read- ily view these markings. Product Labeling Bulk commodities not put up for retail sales still require certain labeling. The product name (in English), product weight, Country of Origin, and responsi- ble party such as exporter, importer, or distributor, are required. Product Cleanliness CBP Agriculture will examine shipments for pests such as snails, insects, worms and other dangerous bugs. It is best to ensure your shipment will pass this examination prior to export. In addition, more produce than ever is being tested by the FDA for pesticides and filth issues such as mold and insect parts. One last consideration: use a Border Consolidated Service Provider who can seamlessly move your goods from the Mexican side to the U.S. side, clear your shipment through U.S. Customs, cross dock or cold store your shipment, and deliver to market. To learn more about Phillip Garcia U.S. Customs Broker, visit Texas Town in row #2264. Visit www.phillipgarcia.com, email phillipgarciachb@yahoo.com or call 956-843-7050. DFA OF CALIFORNIA'S RED SEAL PROGRAM – 'MEETING GLOBAL FOOD SAFETY AND QUALITY DEMANDS' When a buyer contacts a company to secure a load or loads of products, there are many details that remain to be worked out. Discussions will usual- ly begin with a basic description of the type of product that buyer is looking for and then quickly switch to a dia- logue on pricing. After pricing has been agreed to there are contracts to be arranged and logistics to consider, including timing, availability for pro- duction and transportation. After all of the moving pieces previously men- tioned have been determined, the details of facility food safety, product quality and laboratory specifications will need to be addressed. This is where the Red Seal Certification pro- gram becomes a valuable tool for DFA members and those that purchase their specialty crop commodities from around the world. DFA of California is a food safety and quality company that services California packers of dried fruit, tree nuts and other kindred products. Since the world's attention to product safety and quality continues to evolve, pro- viding services (such as Red Seal cer- tification, laboratory analysis, and food safety audits) to help California packers is taking on an even more important role. Due to this increased attention, the Red Seal Program was developed to create product quality assurance verification. The Red Seal Program is focused in food safety and commodity quality inspection – the areas where customers benefit the most from DFA's experience. The Red Seal can address all of the follow- ing questions: 1. Does the facility have a, "Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP)" plan in place? 2. Has the facility maintained a HACCP Verification and/or Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) Audit Certificate? 3. Does the facility have frequent third-party Food Safety and/or GMP audits? 4. Can the supplier meet my com- pany's requests for specific product quality parameters? 5. Are USDA grading standards being used to determine product quali- ty and defect tolerances? 6. Is the product analyzed and test- ed to meet our company's specifica- tions by a 3rd Party Accredited Laboratory? Customer requests and contract requirements con- cerning product quality inspection and laboratory testing can be verified by DFA, and added under the "Contract Requirements" portion of the Red Seal Certificate. Because the Red Seal is a certificate of Food Safety and Quality, there may no longer be a requirement to for the packer to issue multiple food safety documents to the buyer in order to verify compliance with its requests. Subsequently, the buyer can now be assured that the facility where its purchased products are being packed in maintains food safety standards that are acceptable both domestically and world-wide. For more information, visit www.dfaofca.com, call 916-561-5900, email contact@dfaofca.com or stop by booth #2179.

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