New Factsheet: How Animal Food Facilities Can Prepare for Regulatory Inspections

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promotional header with text New Extension Factsheet on Inspection Preparation

Regulatory inspections. They can be a source of worry, and many animal food facility teams only start thinking about preparing for inspections as the inspectors walk through their doors!

It’s understandable – the “what if” questions can be large in number, and facility teams can get frustrated when trying to come up with a plan.

With this in mind, we asked regulators for their advice, so facility teams can be proactive and help make the inspection process go more smoothly.

Our new factsheet, How Animal Food Facilities Can Prepare for Regulatory Inspections, presents a number of practices that aren’t required, but might be useful as facilities prepare for, experience, and evaluate the results of, inspections.

The factsheet offers helpful practices for pre-, during, and post-inspections, addressing topics like:

  • Knowing which regulations you are required to comply with*
  • Assembling an inspection team
  • Mock inspections
  • Biosecurity
  • Facility and document inspections
  • Closeout meetings

*The list of regulations provided in the factsheet is not all-inclusive. It is the responsibility of each facility to determine which rules/regulations apply.

Now is a great time to think about, and prepare for, a possible inspection.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) paused routine on-site inspections in the U.S. in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Inspectors continued for-cause inspections deemed mission critical by using tools such as remote assessments and import alerts.

Earlier this month (July 2020), the agency announced that inspections would resume beginning July 20 in certain areas based on their COVID-19 Advisory Rating System assessments.

The three (3) types of inspections that could occur in a state or area based on the results of the COVID-19 Advisory Rating System are

  1. mission critical inspections only,
  2. all inspections with ways to help protect staff who have self-identified as being in a vulnerable population or
  3. all regulatory activities.

Preparation is one of the best ways to reduce worry about a challenging situation (like an inspection!). Use our factsheet to start preparing for your next inspection now.

Extension Factsheet attach_file

How Animal Food Facilities Can Prepare for Regulatory Inspections

Though they can be a source of worry, the fact of the matter is that many animal food facilities often think about preparing for inspections as the inspectors walk through …

Check out other resources for managing stress during COVID-19.


If you have questions about feed mill inspections or animal food safety, please contact Marissa Herchler.