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Dairy Facts 2016

IDFA Develops Searchable Database for FDA Milk Safety Memos

Aug 23, 2017

IDFA has made it easier to access information issued by the Food and Drug Administration’s Milk Safety Branch on Grade “A” products and production with its online database unveiled last week. Accessible only to IDFA members, the database provides a comprehensive search function not available anywhere else and allows companies to quickly access the information they need.

The information in the memorandums is useful to dairy companies because it provides interpretations from the Milk Safety Branch and FDA Office of Labeling on specific questions and issues pertaining to the Grade “A” interstate milk shipments program. These interpretations provide a wealth of information on regulatory requirements for dairy farms, milk hauling, dairy processing equipment and single service packaging, along with milk and dairy product sampling, testing and labeling.

While FDA’s Milk Safety Branch currently provides an index of the memorandum by code number, title, issue date and status, its website does not allow companies to search for a specific topic or by a key word.

“We are proud to offer capabilities through our database that did not exist before,” said Cary Frye, IDFA senior vice president of regulatory affairs. “Our new database allows members to search every active Memorandum of Information, which are memorandums from FDA covering a variety of topics that may pertain to the National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments program and Grade “A” dairy products that include milk and milk products such as yogurt and cultured dairy.”

How to Access the Database

Visit IDFA’s Resource Center and log in to access the full list of memorandums, dating back to 1982. Enter your search term to find information in the database.

“If a member has a question about FDA’s interpretations of cheese under the National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments (NCIMS) program, for example, the user may enter the word ‘cheese’ into the search box and generate a list of memorandums with the subject, date and a selection of text that contains the word searched,” Frye said. “Users can then click on any memorandum from the search results and search the document by using CRTL+F to find the specific word they initially searched for.”

Recognizing the efforts by individual staff members, Frye said, “IDFA would like to thank Rob Carpenter, IDFA director of information technology, and Rylee Sterrett, IDFA summer intern, for their work in developing the database.”

IDFA welcomes feedback on the database and its search tool. Contact Frye at with questions, problems or suggestions.

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