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How To Work With AFIC

The following table lists the things you must do to use of the Arkansas Food Innovation Center (AFIC). Although the list looks long, the process is not really complicated. Most of the steps are very simple to complete and the AFIC manager will provide help with the process.

Step 1.

 

Contact the AFIC Manager to determine if AFIC has the facilities and equipment to process your food product(s). If you decide you want to work with AFIC, complete a Client Intake Interview form. This form is available:

To submit your request on-line, click here to open the form. Once you have filled in the requested information, click the send button at the end of the form.

To complete offline: Click here to open the form* for printing. Once completed, mail the form to AFIC, 2650 N. Young Ave., Fayetteville, AR 72704 or scan it and send as an email attachment to afic@uark.edu. (Form is in PDF format. See note above at bottom of page if you need help viewing PDF files.)

Step 2.

 

Notify the proper regulatory authorities of your intention to produce a product at AFIC. You will need to:
  • Send a notification to William Hastings, Senior Environmental Health Specialist, Arkansas Department of Health (phone: 501-661-2171; email: william.hastingsjr@arkansas.gov) .

  • File your product with the FDA. Information on doing this can be found on the FDA website.
Step 3. Develop a product label. The Product Labeling Information Guide (pdf*) provides information on mandatory label requirements.

  • AFIC can assist in developing the Nutritional Facts panel of the label. For information on using this service, visit the Services page on this website.

  • Many retailers use Universal Product Codes (UPC barcodes) to identify products in their inventory system. Including this code in your label design will help when you go to place your product in retail outlets. The article "How to Get UPC Barcodes for Your Products" provides more information on these codes and how to get them.

  • If your product is from Arkansas grown ingredients, you may want to include the Arkansas Grown logo on your label. The handout "Arkansas Grown Participation Program" provides information on this logo and it's use.

  • AFIC staff can review labels to determine if they have all required information in the proper format. Having this review before printing can save time and money. Will Hastings at the AR Department of Health (contact information above) can also review labels. AFIC staff also may be able to help you identify label suppliers in the local area.
Step 4. Write a manufacturing specification. This is a step by step procedure for making and packaging the product. The AFIC Manager has a sample format for providing this information.

  • To assure a consistent product, convert all measures from volumetric to weights (i.e. cups to ounces, etc.).Help in making these conversions can be found at: http://www.sciencemadesimple.net/conversions.html.

  • Be sure to include Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) items like where raw material will be purchased, storage of materials and finished product, recall procedures, cleaning and sanitation requirements, etc.

  • AFIC will also develop an Allergen Control Plan if allergens are part of your formula.
Step 5. Complete the additional paperwork required. The first two items below are mandatory. The third item, the Confidentiality Agreement, is optional.

  • Get a letter from the Food Science Department giving you permission to use the AFIC. The AFIC Manager can provide you with a sample of this letter. This letter must be submitted to the Arkansas Department of Health (Will Hastings).

  • You must buy product liability insurance and submit a form verifying this coverage to AFIC. The Food Liability Insurance Program (FLIP) provides insurance to small food sellers. This is an excellent source of reasonably-priced product liability insurance.

  • You may also wish to sign a Confidentiality Agreement (PDF*)

 

Step 6. Order necessary ingredients and supplies to produce your product

 

AFIC staff can offer suggestions for sources of ingredients and supplies. However, you should shop around for the suppliers that best meet your needs.
Step 7. Contact the AFIC Manager to schedule a date/time to produce your product.

 

 
Step 8. Consult with AFIC staff if there are other forms and procedures necessary to process your specific product(s).

 

 
Step 9. After processing is completed remove all ingredients and finished product from the AFIC.

 

We have limited space and are not approved as a warehousing facility so you must arrange to store any unused ingredients and your finished product away from AFIC.

 

* In order to view and print pdf files, you must have a pdf reader installed on your computer. Adobe Acrobat Reader is designed for this purpose and is available as a free download at http://www.adobe.com/products/reader.htm

 
© 2014 University of Arkansas System
Division of Agriculture
All rights reserved.
Last Date Modified 08/18/2016
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University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture
Arkansas Food Innovation Center
Institute of Food Science and Engineering
2650 N. Young Ave., Fayetteville, AR 72704 • USA
Phone (479) 575-4450 • Fax (479) 575-6936
afic@uark.edu