Regulatory Affairs of Food - CPS (RFA)

RFA 6100. Introduction to Regulatory Affairs of Food and Food Industries. 3 Hours.

Introduces some of the diverse challenges with food regulation on a global scale. Offers students an overview of how food manufacturers and food products are regulated in the United States. Introduces the basic statutes governing food regulation and the mission, structure, and authority of the agencies responsible for implementing and enforcing food regulation. Studies how the regulatory process is shaped by bureaucratic constraints; scientific and policy concerns; and input from industry, consumers, and advocacy groups, as well as how regulatory developments influence food issues, in order to provide a solid foundation for other courses in the program. Covers the program goals pertaining to specialized knowledge, broad and integrative knowledge, applied and collaborative learning, civic and global learning, and experiential learning.

RFA 6110. From Farm to Family Table: Understanding the Food Regulatory Life Cycle. 3 Hours.

Studies the life cycle (stages such as preharvest, harvest/slaughter, processing, packaging, distribution, and retail) of different categories of food. This “farm-to-table” process requires the alignment and collaboration of diverse industry and regulatory stakeholders—often with very divergent interests. Offers students an opportunity to begin developing specialized knowledge, broad and integrative knowledge, applied and collaborative learning, and civic and global learning as they examine the dominant food distribution channels as well as the economic, scientific, and regulatory compliance considerations of big agribusinesses.

RFA 6120. Economic and Social Aspects of Food. 3 Hours.

Introduces students to the cause-and-effect relationship of geographic, political, economic, and social/cultural aspects of food. Offers students an overview of the forces that govern changes in policies as well as the demand, supply, cost, and perceived value of food in the United States. Explores societal factors in terms of their cause-and-effect relationship with the evolution of food throughout the 20th century in America. Studies the emerging and dominant trends in food purchasing and consumption and the roles of the government, industry, and consumers/citizens.

RFA 6130. Food Law in the United States. 3 Hours.

Studies key areas of food law, regulation, and policy that empower (and limit) the powers and jurisdictions of federal and state government regulatory agencies in the United States. Offers students an opportunity to practice specialized knowledge, broad and integrative knowledge, civic and global learning, and experiential learning through their study of food safety preventive controls, labeling, inspection/auditing, import/export, recent criminal cases, as well as contemporary food law issues (such as additives and coloring, claims and advertising, nutrition labeling, food defense, food fraud, intentional adulteration, and genetically modified organisms).

RFA 6200. Comparing U.S. Regulatory Systems and Agencies. 3 Hours.

Explores the history, the legal basis of regulatory authority, structures, and limitations within food regulatory environments. Reexamines the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) from a comparative perspective and with a look at other federal and state agencies, as well as nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and the role of advocacy groups.

RFA 6205. Key Submissions for Food Regulatory Affairs. 3 Hours.

Studies key regulatory submissions for food products, such as Generally Regarded as Safe (GRAS) applications, Registration of Novel Food and Novel Food Ingredients, Food Facilities Registration, Filing Prior Notice Documents for Imported Foods, New Dietary Ingredient Notifications, and others. Using current product examples, offers students an opportunity to produce sample documentation critical for product approval at various stages of the regulatory pathway.

RFA 6210. Food Safety and Modernization. 3 Hours.

Examines the central provisions of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), noting where the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has assumed new authority and activities in order to prevent food safety problems before they damage the health of consumers. Students evaluate multiple aspects of FSMA implementation, such as the challenges faced by states, mandatory registration of food production facilities, the requirement that food facilities adopt hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) plans, third-party auditors, the creation of food product tracing systems, and increased produce inspection.

RFA 6215. Risk Analysis and Hazard Analysis in the Food Industry. 3 Hours.

Studies the application of risk analysis and hazard analysis methods to the food industry. Topics include basic concepts and applications of risk analysis, the use of risk and hazard modeling, hazard and risk characterizations, risk management and risk communication, and the utility of adopting the hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) system. Students practice applied and collaborative learning by creating a food industry training plan that reflects major concepts of this course. Offers students an opportunity to practice experiential learning through the analysis of discipline-specific content, classifying food risks (contaminants), listing potential risks to humans, and evaluating recent food adulterant events for gaps in risk hazard analysis.

RFA 6220. Food Safety and Surveillance: Concepts and Applications. 3 Hours.

Examines concepts and methods for conducting surveillance of food-borne diseases, both in humans and in animals. Topics include methods from epidemiology and public health to address problems that have often been kept within the Food and Drug Administration’s and U.S. Department of Agriculture’s domains; ways to improve coordination among human health organizations and food regulatory professionals; the relationship between municipal, state, and federal agencies governing food-borne disease; and the best means to enlist the food industry as partners in health surveillance.

RFA 6225. Introduction to Food Science. 3 Hours.

Offers students an opportunity to gain the requisite knowledge and skill sets to become proficient in the major elements of food science. Explores topics such as food chemistry, food nutrition, food microbiology, food drying, heat preservation, freeze preservation, food packaging, and irradiation. Studies these methods as they apply to different commodities. Designed for students with or without a strong scientific background.

RFA 6230. The Scientific, Social, and Commercial Aspects of Genetically Modified Foods. 3 Hours.

Examines technical, social, and economic aspects of genetically modified foods (GMFs), such as the scientific basis for genetic modifications; processes for mass production of transgenic crop varieties; the increase in food quality and quantity; the commodification of plants and animals; property and patent rights over genetic material; select groups’ protests and resistance against GMFs; unintended consequences of using genetically modified organisms; the use of biotechnology for farming in emerging economies; the regulatory differences over GMFs in Europe, Asia, and the United States; and the connection between GMFs and the commercial ascendance of alternative foods and agricultures.

RFA 6235. Regulatory Differences and Similarities: An International Investigation. 3 Hours.

Offers a cross-national comparison of regulatory environments. Examines various regulatory touch points along the food production life cycle; the legislative and bureaucratic basis of inspection and enforcement practices in several nations; and various governments’ interventions to protect against contamination, adulteration, or loss. Offers students an opportunity to begin developing specialized knowledge, broad and integrative knowledge, and civic and global learning.

RFA 6300. Capstone: Regulatory Affairs of Food. 3 Hours.

Serves as the capstone course for students in the MS-RFA program at the College of Professional Studies (CPS). Uses practical exercises and discussions designed to offer students an opportunity to demonstrate that they have achieved program goals pertaining to specialized, broad, and integrative knowledge; applied and collaborative learning; civic and global learning; and experiential learning. Incorporates group and individual assignments that require students to extend and reflect upon their completed research of food industry, food regulatory policy, and food law on national and international levels. Emphasizes the comprehension of current global regulatory issues. Uses case-based methodologies to enable real-world application of topics and regulatory issues discussed throughout the RFA program. This course is taken in a student’s final term.

RFA 6310. Food Across International Borders: The International Food Trade. 3 Hours.

Analyzes key topics in international food trade, such as globalization and international agricultural commodity markets, food seizures at international borders, the imposition of tariffs and domestic support policies, the power and limits to the World Trade Organization and free trade agreements, country-of-origin labeling, and the relationship between cultural preferences and food imports.

RFA 6315. From Farm to Dinner Table: The Industrialization and Commercialization of Food. 3 Hours.

Traces the emergence and dominance of the industrialization and global commercialization of food production and food trade. Explores historical examples, sociological theories, legal case studies, economic trend data, and financial investment models.

RFA 6350. Political, Social, and Economic Influences on Food Law, Regulation, and Policy. 3 Hours.

Analyzes the food legal landscape, specifically the political, social, and economic influences that shape food regulations, laws, and policies. Offers students an opportunity to apply current case law to contemporary situations with topics that intersect with various themes present throughout core and elective courses.

RFA 6410. Landmark Changes in International Food Policy. 3 Hours.

Analyzes key U.S. food policies with international implications, as well as partnerships, agreements, organizations (such as the U.N., WTO, and WHO), and other international food policies that impact the regulation and inspection of exported foods. Examples include NAFTA, TPP, FSMA, C.O.O.L., and EFSA.

RFA 6411. International Surveillance and Regulation of Food. 3 Hours.

Builds upon earlier learning by guiding students as they analyze international issues behind the surveillance and regulation of food. Offers students an opportunity to research how food and food industries are regulated, examining the challenges faced by regulators as they attempt to monitor the production and distribution of food and food ingredients from dramatically different agricultural settings. Focuses on a geographic region of their choice for their analysis.

RFA 6412. FDA Model Food Code: Implications for Industry. 3 Hours.

Examines the industry implications of the FDA model Food Code, used for safeguarding public health and ensuring food is unadulterated and honestly presented when offered to the consumer. It represents FDA's best advice for a uniform system of provisions that address the safety and protection of food offered at retail and in food service. This model is offered for adoption by local, state, and federal government jurisdictions for administration by the various departments, agencies, bureaus, divisions, and other units within each jurisdiction that have been delegated compliance responsibilities for food service, retail food stores, or food vending operations. .

RFA 6413. Total Food Protection from Farm to Fork. 3 Hours.

Examines best practices that encourage vigilance throughout the entire food chain, with particular emphasis on epidemiological implications. The 2016 implementation of the FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) has created landmark changes in regulation of food on both the domestic and international fronts. As emphasized by the seven key FSMA regulatory policy changes, total food protection is the combination of food safety and food defense. Often overlooked is the fact that the resources utilized to grow and produce food are perpetually susceptible to food terror.

RFA 7995. Project. 1-4 Hours.

Focuses on an in-depth project in which a student conducts research or produces a product related to the student’s major field. May be repeated up to five times for up to 24 total credits.