Food safety innovations in federal guidelines.

Author:Lipcsei, Lauren

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Lauren Lipcsei and Taylor Radke are both Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) research fellows in EHSB's Division of Emergency and Environmental Health Services at the National Center for Environmental Health.

In January 2017, the Department of Health and Human Services released an updated version of the Food Service Guidelines for Federal Facilities (Figure 1), previously known in 2011 as the Health and Sustainability Guidelines for Federal Concessions and Vending Operations. These guidelines apply to food service concession and vending operations at federal facilities (e.g., a full-service cafeteria in a federal building, a full-service restaurant in a national park, or a self-service food operation at a national monument), and will be used for developing contracts and permits. The Food Service Guidelines Federal Workgroup that developed the guidelines included more than 60 representatives from the following nine federal departments and agencies:

* U.S. Department of Agriculture,

* U.S. Department of Commerce,

* U.S. Department of Defense,

* U.S. Department of Education,

* U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,

* U.S. Department of the Interior,

* U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs,

* U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and

* U.S. General Services Administration. The updated guidelines include four sections: Food and Nutrition; Facility Efficiency, Environmental Support, and Community Development; Food Safety; and Behavioral Design. Each section identifies two levels of criteria implementation that are considered during the negotiation of contracts between federal facilities and food service contractors. The two levels of criteria are:

  1. Standard Criteria

    1. Criteria that are considered to be widely achievable.

    2. Implementation at this level is expected.

  2. Innovative Criteria

    1. Criteria that promote exceptional performance and are...

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