A summary based on information gathered durig the AFIA Equipment Manufacturer"s Committee Conference held in San Antonio, Texas, USA in mid-November 2018.

We often wish that the world could stop changing and developing. Just as we feel comfortable in our space and life, a new development knocks us sideways. Unfortunately, that is the inevitable mark of progress that we need to grab onto and keep up with in order to survive and even thrive as we move into the future.

The feed machinery industry is no different. In 2014, China initiated a
new ISO technical committee to develop standards specific to stationary feed machinery. China is one of the top producers of feed machinery and animal feed. They saw this window of opportunity for international support in what they perceived as an underserved industry. While the response of the international community was mixed on the topic, there was enough support to gain approval and the establishment of ISO TC 293 Feed Machinery.

International standards need to represent the majority of global manufacturers. Different regions of the world develop processes that align with their geographic needs as well as national regulations. Balanced standards must provide enough generality to accommodate the majority.

The US initially voted against the proposed technical committee as US manufacturers did not perceive a need for standards specific to feed machinery. With the international committee formed, the US made the decision to get involved in order to help balance the global participation which initially included Asian and Middle Eastern countries.

Work began with the development of the foundational terminology to be used in the subsequent standards being planned. US involvement assisted
in the clarification and reduction in the overall number of terms deemed necessary as a foundation. The proposed drafts were translations from Chinese standards and as there isn"t a direct translation for many of the terms used in the English language, expressing ideas and explaining differing viewpoints has been a challenge for the countries involved. Work continues as the terminology standards are being refined with an eye toward publication in the future.

The committee's focus is now moving toward the applications of Safety and Hygiene in feed machinery, two important areas. The second international gathering of represented countries will take place on January 15-16, 2019 in Winterthur, Switzerland.

As the group begins to discuss more than terminology, the international experts are planning to come together to refine their business and development plan to discern the gaps in international standards that currently apply to the feed machinery being produced. Interested countries can join at any time as either observing members or participating members by contacting their national standards organization. More information about ISO TC 293 Feed Machinery can be found at https://www.iso.org/ committee/5364893.html.

Change isn"t always welcome, but with involvement, any organization can have a voice in steering the direction. Progress is about having a place at the table rather than sitting back and letting others make decisions that will impact us whether we want them to or not.

Mr Gary Huddleston, AFIA"s director of feed manufacturing and regulatory affairs, told the meeting in San Antonio that the resolution of the first plenary meeting was the approval of both the scope of TC-293 and its associated business plan and the creation of three ad hoc working groups: AHG1 Terminology, AHG2 Safety and AHG3 Hygiene.

We still need everyones input in the working groups, he told Milling and Grain.

"Don"t get surprised by an industry standard that gets developed without your input."

To get involved with the US TAG for TC 293, contact Mr Scott Cedarquist, Director of Standards at the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE), cedarq@asabe.org or Mr. Gary Huddleston, Director, Feed Manufacturing and Regulatory Affairs, American Feed Industry Association (AFIA), ghuddleston@afia.org

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