August 27, 2020

OSHA and FDA Publish Checklist for Food Manufacturers During COVID-19

A checklist (PDF) developed by OSHA and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) contains considerations for FDA-regulated human and animal food manufacturers when continuing, resuming, and re-evaluating operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Foreign facilities that manufacture, process, pack, or hold food for consumption in the United States may also find that the checklist provides information useful in their operations. The checklist discusses matters such as determining when an employee should be tested for the coronavirus and configuring the work environment to help minimize the risk of SARS-CoV-2 spread among workers. Diagrams depicting how to align workstations to incorporate social-distancing practices and ways to create social distancing during operations in fields are also included.

FDA notes that the new document is not an exhaustive list of actions that employers in human and animal food operations can take to ensure worker health and food safety during the pandemic. For sector-specific information, the checklist points users to guidance developed jointly by CDC and OSHA for agriculture, seafood processing, and meat and poultry processing.

For more information, see FDA’s website or OSHA’s press release.