IESC’s Newest Project Centers on Food Safety and TFA Compliance in the Dominican Republic
The U.S. and the Dominican Republic (DR) have strong and complementary agricultural trade linkages. The U.S. is the DR’s largest export market for food and agricultural products (45 percent), and the DR is the U.S.’ 20th largest agricultural export market. As the DR’s economy grows and diversifies, advances in their sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) and food safety policies, systems, and processes are required to address the latest international food safety market requirements intended to ensure the health and wellbeing of both U.S. and DR consumers.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has awarded IESC new funding in the Dominican Republic to build market-based incentives for companies to practice SPS and food safety standards in the domestic market. The five-year, $13.7 million Trade Safe (TraSa) project will improve the efficiency, coordination, and transparency of the trade, commercialization, and safety of food and agricultural products. TraSa will accomplish this by supporting the implementation of science and risk-based SPS measures, standards, and regulations.
IESC will work closely with the DR’s Ministry of Agriculture to expand local, regional, and international trade in agricultural products while increasing agricultural productivity. TraSa will also improve access to safe foods for Dominican consumers.
To facilitate the adoption of science-based and technically sound SPS regulations and measures, TraSa will improve the technical capacity of public and private sector institutions involved in SPS to streamline collaboration and implement transparent, risk-based SPS regulations.
TraSa will also enhance collaboration among the public and private sectors to address private sector infrastructure needed to advance cold chain systems needed prevent foodborne diseases and adhere to perishable goods international trade requirements. This effort includes supporting use of management systems, such as traceability, and developing human capacity to manage cold chain systems. The project aims to leverage more than $2.2 million in private sector investments to improved cold chain infrastructure.
TraSa will build upon the accomplishments of the USDA-funded Exporting Quality (EQ) program, also implemented by IESC. Under EQ, IESC is providing capacity building and training on improved technologies and farm, land, and water resource management, supporting producer groups, cooperatives, and packinghouses to meet international standards for food safety and quality.
TraSa is funded through the USDA Food for Progress Program. IESC implements the project in partnership with Purdue University, the Global Cold Chain Alliance-World Food Logistics Organization (GCCA-WFLO), LixCap, and the DR-based Center for Agricultural and Forestry Development (CEDAF).