October 29, 2020
This is an important message for all food importers. The FDA Food Facility renewal for 2021-2022 is now active. All food importers and foreign food manufacturers must renew their registrations by December 31, 2020. Here is the link to the FDA registration of Food Facilities website.
There is one, very important, NEW requirement for all registered food facilities, foreign and domestic. All food facilities must now have a Unique Facility Identifier number (UFI) in order to submit the FDA Food Facility registration renewal. If the facility does not have a UFI, they will be unable to complete the registration renewal.
The ONLY acceptable UFI that FDA has approved at this time is the DUNS (Dun & Bradstreet) number. All food facilities are therefore now required to have a DUNS number.
All domestic food importers in the United States should already have a DUNS number as it has been needed in order to import food products over the past year. However the real challenge is that the foreign facilities now must also have a DUNS number. Various foreign food facilities have informed us that the process for getting the DUNS number for a foreign company is not a straightforward, quick process. Here is the link to a website that foreign companies can use to get started. The company should first try searching to see if they are already registered. If they are not registered, the website will allow for the foreign company to submit a registration. However we are hearing that once the registration is submitted, D&B is forwarding the information to a third party to verify the registration. Foreign facilities are being told this process could take 30 days to complete.
We STRONGLY urge all our food importers to make sure that their foreign vendors immediately begin the process of getting their DUNS number if they haven’t started the process yet.