FDA opens third Latin American office

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The FDA has opened a Mexico City office, part of the agency’s plan to re-design its product safety strategy by working with regulatory partners. The new post marks the agency’s 10th international post and its third post in Latin America in 13 months.

The Mexico City office will work alongside the Mexican government to facilitate collaborative initiatives, including the coordination of regulations and standards and the collaboration on the use of the latest laboratory techniques, as well as information-sharing between both systems and joint workshops on food safety and medical products, said the agency.

In addition, certification programs will be developed and technical advice will be provided by way of the FDA staff in Mexico City, said Murray M. Lumpkin, MD, U.S. FDA deputy commissioner for international programs.

According to the FDA, the new post will serve as a “portal” to the agency for counterpart Mexican agencies and the U.S.-export industry in Mexico. Other plans for the office include taking part in joint-training for the oversight of food traded internationally, and the safety of food and medical products marketed in the two countries.

"We, like our partners in the Mexican Government, realize that prevention is the key,” said U.S. FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg, MD.  “For example, more than a third of the fresh fruits and vegetables we eat come from Mexico as do a large amount of our medical devices.”

In addition to the U.S. based-staff, the FDA’s 10 international offices include posts in China, India and Europe. Offices in Latin America include posts in Santiago, Chile, with the agency’s Latin America Office headquartered in San José, Costa Rica.