The National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments (NCIMS) acted last week to align the Grade “A” Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (PMO) with the regulatory requirements in the preventive controls for human food rule under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). The meeting, which was held in Grand Rapids, Mich., was attended by a record-breaking audience of 400 regulators and industry stakeholders from 49 states as well as Puerto Rico. More than 100 participants from nearly 50 IDFA member companies attended the meeting.

“The big news from the 2017 NCIMS meeting is that we successfully harmonized the PMO with FDA’s ‘Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Human Food’ rule, which covers most FDA-regulated foods,” said John Allan, IDFA vice president of regulatory affairs and international standards. “Working together, state regulators, industry stakeholders, FDA officials and experts from academia demonstrated the strength of the NCIMS process to work through difficult issues and come out with a positive solution that advances food safety yet does not overly burden the dairy industry or cash-strapped states.”

The PMO is a set of standards and requirements that regulates all dairy plants producing Grade “A” products, including fluid milk, cream products, yogurt, cottage cheese, eggnog, buttermilk and many dried dairy products. NCIMS, which meets every two years, includes regulators from all 50 states and Puerto Rico and recommends changes and modifications to the PMO for final approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

IDFA has advocated working through the NCIMS process to leverage the success of the PMO in assuring the safety of Grade “A” products while avoiding duplicative or contradictory regulations on the dairy industry. Prior to this meeting, IDFA met with representatives from the National Milk Producers Federation as well as FDA officials to build consensus on a pair of proposals developed to achieve this alignment. At the conference, NCIMS delegates approved these proposals, which will now go to FDA for final approval.

For more information, read “PMO Now Aligns with FDA’s Preventive Controls Rule,” on the IDFA website.

To read more about the PMO alignment with FSMA, read IDFA’s prepared executive summary of this proposal and others here.

For more information, contact Allan at

(L-R): John Allan, IDFA vice president of regulatory affairs and international standards; Clay Hough, IDFA senior group vice president and counsel; Jamie Jonker, vice president of sustainability and scientific affairs, National Milk Producers Federation; Beth Briczinski, vice president of dairy foods and nutrition, National Milk Producers Federation; Cary Frye, IDFA vice president of regulatory and scientific affairs and NCIMS program chair.

(L-R): Hough, Michelle Matto, IDFA nutrition and labeling consultant, Allan, Frye, Will Loux, IDFA regulatory and international affairs coordinator, Emily Lyons, IDFA director of regulatory affairs and counsel.