As the most sweeping food safety reform in over 70 years, the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) aims to assure the safety of food throughout the cold chain through legal requirements for shippers, carriers, and receivers.. To help get your fleet FSMA compliant, we’ve provided a checklist highlighting 10 things carriers should do.

How Carriers Can Comply with the FSMA

  1. Temperature control and tracking

Temperature-sensitive products must be stored in a a pre-cooled compartment that is equipped with at temperature monitoring device, such as Cargo Data’s Lightning Real-Time temperature monitoring instruments. Temperatures must be controlled and monitored during the entire transportation process.

  1. Cleanliness

Vehicles are subject to inspection, so it’s important that carriers properly maintain their cleanliness. In addition, loading and unloading stations must have handwashing facilities.

  1. Training

Carriers are required to complete training and earn certificates to prove that they can implement proper practices for safe food transportation.

  1. Temperature data exchange

Temperature data must be logged and available to the receiver and shipper. Cargo Data’s Lightning Real Time instruments are designed to provide all parties (shipper, carrier, receiver) with a complete in-transit temperature record.

  1. Data retention

Temperature data records must be maintained for at least 12 months. Lightning Real-time users can view archived data online at

  1. Preventative controls

The FSMA requires preventative controls across the cold chain in order to prevent temperature errors and contamination. This plan must contain an identification of known or foreseeable hazards specific to each food.

  1. Risk analysis

An effective risk analysis is crucial in order to identify and mitigate risks in the cold chain.  High risk areas include points of product, handoffs or transfers, ports, transfer facilities, and customer deliveries. Your risk analysis should include handling policies and an overall management plan.

  1. Recall plan

Cold chain facilities must have a written recall plan for any significant risk identified. Although recalls can be difficult and costly, proper planning can make the process run more smoothly.

  1. Trailer spec and design

Carriers must ensure that the design and construction of the vehicle will maintain sanitary conditions during transport.

  1. Transport operations compliance

Carriers must comply with the shipper’s written transportation procedures. These procedures may include specifications for packaging, handling, temperature control, and sanitation.

How Cargo Data Can Help

Cargo Data Corporation has developed the Lightning system to help perishable food shippers, carriers, and receivers comply with all temperature monitoring requirements for the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). For more information, contact us today at (800) 338-8134.