FSIS Announces New Traceback Measures, Recall Procedures and Draft Validation Guidance on HAACP Plans

Thursday, May 3, 2012

(American Meat Institute)

The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has announced it is sending three documents to the Federal Register announcing several new policy measures that will affect inspected establishments.  The documents are expected to publish in the Federal Register next week.   

Specifically, FSIS will be implementing new traceback measures such that when there is an indication of contamination through presumptive positive test results for E. coli the agency will attempt to "link products, companies, and the pathogen to a sole source supplier and to any other processors that received the contaminated product from the supplier."  The agency will accept comments regarding the traceback policy.  The traceback notice is found at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/rdad/FRPubs/2011-0009.pdf.    

FSIS also is implementing three provisions that were required by the 2008 Farm Bill.  Final rules will be published that will require plants to prepare and maintain recall procedures and to  notify FSIS within 24 hours of  learning or determining that a meat or poultry product is adulterated or misbranded and has entered commerce. The establishment must notify the district office about the type, origin, amount, and destination of the product.  In addition, except for routine annual events, every time a plant reassesses its HACCP plan the plant must document that fact and the reason for the reassessment.  The final rule can be found at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/rdad/FRPubs/2008-0025F.pdf

FSIS will also publish a draft validation guidance document, which is intended to aid plants in establishing that their HACCP plans work as designed.  The validation guidance document is a draft and open for comment. The validation guidance document can be found at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/rdad/FRPubs/2009-0019.pdf.  

Said AMI Senior Vice President of Regulatory Affairs and General Counsel Mark Dopp:

“We have long agreed that a recall plan is essential for all meat and poultry companies.  We also believe it is appropriate to reassess HACCP plans and that it is a sound practice to document this reassessment. We look forward to reviewing the draft validation compliance guide and providing comments to the agency."

 

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