Introduction to FSMA

What is the FSMA?

The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), published in 2011, is the most sweeping reform of US food safety laws in more than 70 years. The aim of FSMA is to prevent food safety problems rather than reacting to them. The FSMA contains 7 foundational rules, including the Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Foods, known as the STF Rule. The goal of the STF rule is to prevent practices that create food safety risks during transportation.

If you are a shipper, receiver, loader, or carrier of food products for human or animal consumption, then the STF rule most likely applies to you.

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Summary of Carrier Obligations

Vehicle & Transportation Equipment

Design, maintenance & specification of equipment to ensure that food does not become unsafe during transportation, i.e. you should use the right equipment for the job, and keep it well maintained.

Transportation Operations

The measures taken during transportation to ensure food safety, such as temperature control, pre-cooling, box sanitation, product segregation, and operational best practices.


Training of personnel (including drivers) in awareness of potential food safety problems and basic sanitary transportation practices. Maintain documented records of any training.


Maintain records of all shipper-carrier communications, written procedures, agreements and training. In the case of training records, they should be retained for at least 12 months.

How can Aptarus Help with FSMA Compliance?

Satisfy training requirement

Using our online Food Safety training, you can ensure that your drivers meet the FSMA STF Rule training requirements.

Digital certification

Upon completion of our online course, your drivers receive a digital certificate which can be easily emailed/printed to demonstrate training compliance to your customers, and to regulatory authorities.

Reduced training time

The course content is easy-to-follow, and is divided into modules, allowing your drivers to complete their training quickly and efficiently

Retain training records

Training records are available online 24/7 for every driver, satisfying the requirement to retain training records for up to 12 months.

Ongoing FSMA compliance

Checklists, procedures, and best practices available for your team in the Resource Center. You can use these procedures as-is, or as a guide to develop your own written procedures to ensure ongoing compliance with all aspects of the STF rule

Food Safety Training

Online Training Solution (with Certificate) for Carriers to meet the STF training requirement of the FSMA.

This online course will provide an essential introduction to food safety for motor carriers engaged in transportation of human and animal foods. It is intended to comply with the final FDA rule on Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Foods (STF) as part of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

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Frequently Asked Questions

Does the FSMA STF Rule apply to me?

The final STF rule applies to shippers, receivers, loaders and carriers who transport food in the United States by motor or rail vehicle, whether or not the food is offered for or enters interstate commerce.

When do I need to comply?

For larger businesses subject to the rule, the FSMA compliance date is April 6 2017. For smaller businesses who are not also shippers and/or receivers having less than $27.5 million in annual receipts, and all other businesses employing fewer than 500 persons, the FSMA compliance date is April 6 2018

Does the FDA certify training courses?

The FDA does not require training courses offered by a company or third party to be approved by FDA, or that their instructors be certified.

Are there any exemptions?

The following exemptions apply:

  • Shippers, receivers, or carriers engaged in food transportation operations that have less than $500,000 in average annual revenue.
  • Transportation activities performed by a farm.
  • Transportation of food that is transshipped through the United States to another country.
  • Transportation of food that is imported for future export and that is neither consumed nor distributed in the United States.
  • Transportation of compressed food gases (e.g. carbon dioxide, nitrogen or oxygen authorized for use in food and beverage products), and food contact substances.
  • Transportation of human food by-products transported for use as animal food without further processing.
  • Transportation of food that is completely enclosed by a container except a food that requires temperature control for safety.
  • Transportation of live food animals, except molluscan shellfish.

Access Anywhere

The Aptarus training app is a great companion tool for your Aptarus online training. It provides all the functionality of the Aptarus Learning Management System in your pocket.

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