January 26, 2021
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HB 69

A bill to be entitled
2An act relating to food safety; amending s. 500.03, F.S.;
3revising the term "food establishment" to include tomato
4repackers for purposes of the Florida Food Safety Act;
5creating s. 500.70, F.S.; defining terms; requiring
6minimum food safety standards for producing, harvesting,
7packing, and repacking tomatoes; authorizing the
8Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to inspect
9tomato farms, greenhouses, and packinghouses or repackers;
10providing penalties; authorizing the department to
11establish good agricultural practices and best management
12practices for the tomato industry by rule; providing a
13presumption that tomatoes introduced into commerce are
14safe for human consumption under certain circumstances;
15providing exemptions; authorizing the department to adopt
16rules; amending s. 570.07, F.S.; authorizing the
17department to adopt best management practices for
18agricultural production and food safety; amending s.
19570.48, F.S.; revising duties of the Division of Fruit and
20Vegetables for tomato food safety inspections; amending
21ss. 570.53 and 570.54, F.S.; conforming cross-references;
22providing an effective date.
24Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
26     Section 1.  Paragraph (n) of subsection (1) of section
27500.03, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
28     500.03  Definitions; construction; applicability.--
29     (1)  For the purpose of this chapter, the term:
30     (n)  "Food establishment" means any factory, food outlet,
31or any other facility manufacturing, processing, packing,
32holding, or preparing food, or selling food at wholesale or
33retail. The term does not include any business or activity that
34is regulated under chapter 509 or chapter 601. The term includes
35tomato packinghouses and repackers but does not include any
36other establishments that pack fruits and vegetables in their
37raw or natural states, including those fruits or vegetables that
38are washed, colored, or otherwise treated in their unpeeled,
39natural form before they are marketed.
40     Section 2.  Section 500.70, Florida Statutes, is created to
42     500.70  Tomato food safety standards; inspections;
43penalties; tomato good agricultural practices; tomato best
44management practices.--
45     (1)  As used in this section, the term:
46     (a)  "Field packing" means the packing of tomatoes on a
47tomato farm or in a tomato greenhouse into containers for sale
48for human consumption without transporting the tomatoes to a
50     (b)  "Packing" or "repacking" means the packing of tomatoes
51into containers for sale for human consumption. The term
52includes the sorting or separating of tomatoes into grades and
53sizes. The term also includes field packing.
54     (c)  "Producing" means the planting, growing, or
55cultivating of tomatoes on a tomato farm or in a tomato
56greenhouse for sale for human consumption.
57     (2)  The department may adopt rules establishing food
58safety standards to safeguard the public health and promote the
59public welfare by protecting the consuming public from injury
60caused by the adulteration or the microbiological, chemical, or
61radiological contamination of tomatoes. The rules must be based
62on federal requirements, available scientific research,
63generally accepted industry practices, and recommendations of
64food safety professionals. The rules shall apply to the
65producing, harvesting, packing, and repacking of tomatoes for
66sale for human consumption by a tomato farm, tomato greenhouse,
67or tomato packinghouse or repacker in this state. The rules may
68include, but are not limited to, standards for:
69     (a)  Registration with the department of a person who
70produces, harvests, packs, or repacks tomatoes in this state who
71does not hold a food permit issued under s. 500.12.
72     (b)  Proximity of domestic animals and livestock to the
73production areas for tomatoes.
74     (c)  Food safety related use of water for irrigation during
75production and washing of tomatoes after harvest.
76     (d)  Use of fertilizers.
77     (e)  Cleaning and sanitation of containers, materials,
78equipment, vehicles, and facilities, including storage and
79ripening areas.
80     (f)  Health, hygiene, and sanitation of employees who
81handle tomatoes.
82     (g)  Training and continuing education of a person who
83produces, harvests, packs, or repacks tomatoes in this state,
84and the person's employees who handle tomatoes.
85     (h)  Labeling and recordkeeping, including standards for
86identifying and tracing tomatoes for sale for human consumption.
87     (3)(a)  The department may inspect tomato farms, tomato
88greenhouses, tomato packinghouses, repacking locations, or any
89vehicle being used to transport or hold tomatoes to ensure
90compliance with the applicable provisions of this chapter and
91the rules adopted under this chapter.
92     (b)  The department may impose an administrative fine not
93to exceed $5,000 per violation, or issue a written notice or
94warning under s. 500.179, against a person who violates any
95applicable provision of this section or any rule adopted under
96this section.
97     (4)(a)  The department may adopt rules establishing tomato
98good agricultural practices and tomato best management practices
99for the state's tomato industry based on applicable federal
100requirements, available scientific research, generally accepted
101industry practices, and recommendations of food safety
103     (b)  A person who documents compliance with the
104department's rules, tomato good agricultural practices, and
105tomato best management practices is presumed to introduce
106tomatoes into the stream of commerce that are safe for human
107consumption, unless the department identifies noncompliance
108through inspections.
109     (5)  Subsections (2) and (4) do not apply to tomatoes sold
110by the grower on the premises at which the tomatoes are grown or
111at a local farmers' market, if the quantity of tomatoes sold
112does not exceed two 25-pound boxes per customer.
113     (6)  The department may adopt rules pursuant to ss.
114120.536(1) and 120.54 to administer this section.
115     Section 3.  Subsection (10) of section 570.07, Florida
116Statutes, is amended to read:
117     570.07  Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services;
118functions, powers, and duties.--The department shall have and
119exercise the following functions, powers, and duties:
120     (10)  To act as adviser to producers and distributors, when
121requested, and to assist them in the economical and efficient
122distribution of their agricultural products, and to encourage
123cooperative effort among producers to gain economical and
124efficient production of agricultural products, and to adopt
125rules establishing comprehensive best management practices for
126agricultural production and food safety.
127     Section 4.  Paragraph (e) of subsection (2) of section
128570.48, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
129     570.48  Division of Fruit and Vegetables; powers and
130duties; records.--The duties of the Division of Fruit and
131Vegetables include, but are not limited to:
132     (2)
133     (e)  Performing tomato food safety inspections under s.
134500.70 on tomato farms, in tomato greenhouses, and in tomato
135packinghouses and repackers.
136     Section 5.  Paragraph (e) of subsection (6) of section
137570.53, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
138     570.53  Division of Marketing and Development; powers and
139duties.--The powers and duties of the Division of Marketing and
140Development include, but are not limited to:
141     (6)
142     (e)  Extending in every practicable way the distribution
143and sale of Florida agricultural products throughout the markets
144of the world as required of the department by s. ss. 570.07(7),
145(8), (10), and (11) and 570.071 and chapters 571, 573, and 574.
146     Section 6.  Subsection (2) of section 570.54, Florida
147Statutes, is amended to read:
148     570.54  Director; duties.--
149     (2)  It shall be the duty of the director of this division
150to supervise, direct, and coordinate the activities authorized
151by ss. 570.07(4), (7), (8), (10), (11), (12), (17), (18), and
152(20), 570.071, 570.21, 534.47-534.53, and 604.15-604.34 and
153chapters 504, 571, 573, and 574 and to exercise other powers and
154authority as authorized by the department.
155     Section 7.  This act shall take effect July 1, 2010.

CODING: Words stricken are deletions; words underlined are additions.
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