Skip to Content

Notice

Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Channels of Trade Policy for Commodities With Residues of Pesticide Chemicals, for Which Tolerances Have Been Revoked, Suspended, or Modified by the Environmental Protection Agency Pursuant to Dietary Risk Considerations

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Enhanced Content

Relevant information about this document from Regulations.gov provides additional context. This information is not part of the official Federal Register document.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or Agency) is announcing an opportunity for public comment on the proposed collection of certain information by the Agency. Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), Federal Agencies are required to publish notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of information, including each proposed extension/reinstatement of an existing collection of information, and to allow 60 days for public comment in response to the notice. This notice solicits comments on the information collection provisions of FDA's guidance for industry entitled “Channels of Trade Policy for Commodities With Residues of Pesticide Chemicals, for Which Tolerances Have Been Revoked, Suspended, or Modified by the Environmental Protection Agency Pursuant to Dietary Risk Considerations.”

DATES:

Submit either electronic or written comments on the collection of information by July 24, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments as follows:

Electronic Submissions

Submit electronic comments in the following way:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: https://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. Comments submitted electronically, including attachments, to https://www.regulations.gov will be posted to the docket unchanged. Because your comment will be made public, you are solely responsible for ensuring that your comment does not include any confidential information that you or a third party may not wish to be posted, such as medical information, your or anyone else's Social Security number, or confidential business information, such as a manufacturing process. Please note that if you include your name, contact information, or other information that identifies you in the body of your comments, that information will be posted on https://www.regulations.gov.
  • If you want to submit a comment with confidential information that you do not wish to be made available to the public, submit the comment as a written/paper submission and in the manner detailed (see “Written/Paper Submissions” and “Instructions”).

Written/Paper Submissions

Submit written/paper submissions as follows:

  • Mail/Hand delivery/Courier (for written/paper submissions): Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.
  • For written/paper comments submitted to the Division of Dockets Management, FDA will post your comment, as well as any attachments, except for information submitted, marked and identified, as confidential, if submitted as detailed in “Instructions.”

Instructions: All submissions received must include the Docket No. FDA-2008-N-0094 for “Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Channels of Trade Policy for Commodities With Residues of Pesticide Chemicals, for Which Tolerances Have Been Revoked, Suspended, or Modified by the Environmental Protection Agency Pursuant to Dietary Risk Considerations.” Received comments will be placed in the docket and, except for those submitted as “Confidential Submissions,” publicly viewable at Start Printed Page 24134 https://www.regulations.gov or at the Division of Dockets Management between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

  • Confidential Submissions—To submit a comment with confidential information that you do not wish to be made publicly available, submit your comments only as a written/paper submission. You should submit two copies total. One copy will include the information you claim to be confidential with a heading or cover note that states “THIS DOCUMENT CONTAINS CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION.” The Agency will review this copy, including the claimed confidential information, in its consideration of comments. The second copy, which will have the claimed confidential information redacted/blacked out, will be available for public viewing and posted on https://www.regulations.gov. Submit both copies to the Division of Dockets Management. If you do not wish your name and contact information to be made publicly available, you can provide this information on the cover sheet and not in the body of your comments and you must identify this information as “confidential.” Any information marked as “confidential” will not be disclosed except in accordance with 21 CFR 10.20 and other applicable disclosure law. For more information about FDA's posting of comments to public dockets, see 80 FR 56469, September 18, 2015, or access the information at: https://www.gpo.gov/​fdsys/​pkg/​FR-2015-09-18/​pdf/​2015-23389.pdf.

Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or the electronic and written/paper comments received, go to https://www.regulations.gov and insert the docket number, found in brackets in the heading of this document, into the “Search” box and follow the prompts and/or go to the Division of Dockets Management, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ila S. Mizrachi, Office of Operations, Food and Drug Administration, Three White Flint North, 10A63, 11601 Landsdown St., North Bethesda, MD 20852, 301-796-7726, PRAStaff@fda.hhs.gov.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Under the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), Federal Agencies must obtain approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for each collection of information they conduct or sponsor. “Collection of information” is defined in 44 U.S.C. 3502(3) and 5 CFR 1320.3(c) and includes Agency requests or requirements that members of the public submit reports, keep records, or provide information to a third party. Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)) requires Federal Agencies to provide a 60-day notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of information, including each proposed extension of an existing collection of information, before submitting the collection to OMB for approval. To comply with this requirement, FDA is publishing notice of the proposed collection of information set forth in this document.

With respect to the following collection of information, FDA invites comments on these topics: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of FDA's functions, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of FDA's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques, when appropriate, and other forms of information technology.

Channels of Trade Policy for Commodities With Residues of Pesticide Chemicals, for Which Tolerances Have Been Revoked, Suspended, or Modified by the Environmental Protection Agency Pursuant to Dietary Risk Considerations—OMB Control Number 0910-0562—Extension

The Food Quality Protection Act of 1996, which amended the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act), established a new safety standard for pesticide residues in food, with an emphasis on protecting the health of infants and children. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for regulating the use of pesticides (under FIFRA) and for establishing tolerances or exemptions from the requirement for tolerances for residues of pesticide chemicals in food commodities (under the FD&C Act). EPA may, for various reasons, e.g., as part of a systematic review or in response to new information concerning the safety of a specific pesticide, reassess whether a tolerance for a pesticide residue continues to meet the safety standard in section 408 of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 346a). When EPA determines that a pesticide's tolerance level does not meet that safety standard, the registration for the pesticide may be canceled under FIFRA for all or certain uses. In addition, the tolerances for that pesticide may be lowered or revoked for the corresponding food commodities. Under section 408(l)(2) of the FD&C Act, when the registration for a pesticide is canceled or modified due to, in whole or in part, dietary risks to humans posed by residues of that pesticide chemical on food, the effective date for the revocation of such tolerance (or exemption in some cases) must be no later than 180 days after the date such cancellation becomes effective or 180 days after the date on which the use of the canceled pesticide becomes unlawful under the terms of the cancellation, whichever is later.

When EPA takes such actions, food derived from a commodity that was lawfully treated with the pesticide may not have cleared the channels of trade by the time the revocation or new tolerance level takes effect. The food could be found by FDA, the Agency that is responsible for monitoring pesticide residue levels and enforcing the pesticide tolerances in most foods (the U.S. Department of Agriculture has responsibility for monitoring residue levels and enforcing pesticide tolerances in egg products and most meat and poultry products), to contain a residue of that pesticide that does not comply with the revoked or lowered tolerance. We would normally deem such food to be in violation of the law by virtue of it bearing an illegal pesticide residue. The food would be subject to FDA enforcement action as an “adulterated” food. However, the channels of trade provision of the FD&C Act addresses the circumstances under which a food is not unsafe solely due to the presence of a residue from a pesticide chemical for which the tolerance has been revoked, suspended, or modified by EPA. The channels of trade provision (section 408 (l)(5) of the FD&C Act) states that food containing a residue of such a pesticide shall not be deemed “adulterated” by virtue of the residue, if the residue is within the former tolerance, and the responsible party can demonstrate to FDA's satisfaction that the residue is present as the result of an application of the pesticide at a time and in a manner that were lawful under FIFRA.

In the Federal Register of May 18, 2005 (70 FR 28544), we announced the availability of a guidance document entitled “Channels of Trade Policy for Commodities With Residues of Pesticide Chemicals, for Which Tolerances Have Been Revoked, Suspended, or Modified by the Environmental Protection Agency Pursuant to Dietary Risk Start Printed Page 24135Considerations.” The guidance represents FDA's current thinking on its planned enforcement approach to the channels of trade provision of the FD&C Act and how that provision relates to FDA-regulated products with residues of pesticide chemicals for which tolerances have been revoked, suspended, or modified by EPA under dietary risk considerations. The guidance can be found at the following link: http://www.fda.gov/​Food/​GuidanceRegulation/​GuidanceDocumentsRegulatoryInformation/​ChemicalContaminantsMetalsNaturalToxinsPesticides/​ucm077918.htm. We anticipate that food bearing lawfully applied residues of pesticide chemicals that are the subject of future EPA action to revoke, suspend, or modify their tolerances, will remain in the channels of trade after the applicable tolerance is revoked, suspended, or modified. If we encounter food bearing a residue of a pesticide chemical for which the tolerance has been revoked, suspended, or modified, we intend to address the situation in accordance with provisions of the guidance. In general, we anticipate that the party responsible for food found to contain pesticide chemical residues (within the former tolerance) after the tolerance for the pesticide chemical has been revoked, suspended, or modified will be able to demonstrate that such food was handled, e.g., packed or processed, during the acceptable timeframes cited in the guidance by providing appropriate documentation to FDA as discussed in the guidance document. We are not suggesting that firms maintain an inflexible set of documents where anything less or different would likely be considered unacceptable. Rather, we are leaving it to each firm's discretion to maintain appropriate documentation to demonstrate that the food was so handled during the acceptable timeframes.

Examples of documentation that we anticipate will serve this purpose consist of documentation associated with packing codes, batch records, and inventory records. These are types of documents that many food processors routinely generate as part of their basic food-production operations. Accordingly, under the PRA, we are requesting the extension of OMB approval for the information collection provisions in the guidance.

Description of Respondents: The likely respondents to this collection of information are firms in the produce and food processing industries that handle food products that may contain residues of pesticide chemicals after the tolerances for the pesticide chemicals have been revoked, suspended, or modified.

FDA estimates the burden of this collection of information as follows:

Table 1—Estimated Annual Reporting Burden 1

ActivityNumber of respondentsNumber of responses per respondentTotal annual responsesAverage burden per responseTotal hours
Submission of documentation11133
1 There are no capital costs or operating and maintenance costs associated with this collection of information.

We expect the total number of pesticide tolerances that are revoked, suspended, or modified by EPA under dietary risk considerations in the next 3 years to remain at a low level, as there have been no changes to the safety standard for pesticide residues in food since 1996. Thus, we expect the number of submissions we will receive under the guidance document will also remain at a low level. However, to avoid counting this burden as zero, we have estimated the burden at one respondent making one submission a year for a total of one annual submission.

We based our estimate of the hours per response on the assumption that the information requested in the guidance is readily available to the submitter. We expect that the submitter will need to gather information from appropriate persons in the submitter's company and to prepare this information for submission to FDA. The submitter will almost always merely need to copy existing documentation. We believe that this effort should take no longer than 3 hours per submission.

Table 2—Estimated Annual Recordkeeping Burden 1

ActivityNumber of recordkeepersNumber of records per recordkeeperTotal annual recordsAverage burden per recordkeepingTotal hours
Develop documentation process1111616
1 There are no capital costs or operating and maintenance costs associated with this collection of information.

In determining the estimated annual recordkeeping burden, we estimated that at least 90 percent of firms maintain documentation, such as packing codes, batch records, and inventory records, as part of their basic food production or import operations. Therefore, the recordkeeping burden was calculated as the time required for the 10 percent of firms that may not be currently maintaining this documentation to develop and maintain documentation, such as batch records and inventory records. In previous information collection requests, this recordkeeping burden was estimated to be 16 hours per record. We have retained our prior estimate of 16 hours per record for the recordkeeping burden. As shown in table 1 of this document, we estimate that one respondent will make one submission per year. Although we estimate that only 1 out of 10 firms will not be currently maintaining the necessary documentation, to avoid counting the recordkeeping burden for the 1 submission per year as 1/10 of a recordkeeper, we estimate that 1 recordkeeper will take 16 hours to develop and maintain documentation recommended by the guidance.

Start Signature
Start Printed Page 24136

Dated: May 18, 2017.

Anna K. Abram,

Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Planning, Legislation, and Analysis.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2017-10710 Filed 5-24-17; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4164-01-P