Are there penalties for violations or non-compliance?

FSMA creates tougher criminal liabilities for food companies in the supply chain – including food retailers and wholesalers, as well as suppliers and vendors. Under the so-called “Park Doctrine,” chief executive officers and other corporate officers can be held personally liable for misdemeanor violations of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic (FD&C) Act, regardless of whether they personally were engaged in the violations, or even knew about about them.

Criminal penalties are harsh. Misdemeanor convictions are punishable by up to a year in prison and fines as much as $100,000 for an individual. If a food contamination incident results in death, the maximum fine becomes $250,000, which doubles for an organization.

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