Explaining How the Voluntary Qualified Importer Program Will Work

January 2, 2018

The Voluntary Qualified Importer Program, or VQIP, is a voluntary, fee-based program for importers that will allow expedited review and importation of human and animal foods into the United States for approved applicants who achieve and maintain a high level of control over the safety and security of their supply chains. The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) required FDA to establish VQIP, and the agency expects to begin accepting applications from importers in early 2018.

Why should importers enroll in VQIP? How does the program benefit them, the FDA, and the public health? Doriliz De Leon, a Consumer Safety Officer in the Food Adulteration Assessment Branch in FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, and Amelia Tetterton, a Consumer Safety Officer in the Import Program Development and Implementation Branch in FDA’s Office of Regulatory Affairs, explain the role of this program in helping to ensure the safety and security of imported foods.

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