IKE Scenario 10-02: 9 CFR 416.15 - Slaughter-SSOP/Poultry - 
June 27,2002

You are an IIC at a large three-line NELS poultry plant with TSP on-line reprocessing.

Shortly after start-up an inspector on line two requests that you look at a couple of birds he/she had the helper take off of the line. You notice a couple of small black specks on the legs of the carcasses. After you question this inspector, and all of the other inspectors, you perform some verification of your own and determine that this is a very infrequent occurrence, isolated to line two, and that the bird washers further down the line seem to be removing the specks. You determine this to be potential economic adulteration but that the product is meeting Finished Product Standards (FPS).

Several hours later, one of the GS-08 floor inspector informs you that he/she found "several small smearable black specks" on four of the ten birds while performing a pre-chill FPS test on line two. He/she determined that this substance appeared to be falling off of the rails and onto the carcasses. He/she also informs you that the FPS test passed and therefore the plant did not seem to be worried about it.

Moments later, the other GS-08 floor inspector informs you that the line inspectors on line two had notified her/him that "the birds were covered with a powdery black substance" and that they wanted to see you.

As a critical thinker, what would you do at this juncture to ensure that all regulatory requirements are being met and that the plant is not producing and/or shipping adulterated product?

You go out into the plant to investigate the line inspectorsí concern. You determine that approximately 45% of the birds have varying degrees of a powdery, smearable black substance on them. You look up at the rails and notice a build-up of this same substance on the rails and the chainís trolley wheels.

At this point you review the plantís FPS and SSOP records:

After completing your records review, you inspect some product in the cut-up department:

Finally, you inform plant management of the following:

You go to your office to document the non-compliance on an NR and to await the establishmentís response.


For IKE related questions, send mail to ike@fsis.usda.gov

For IKE related questions, send mail to ike@fsis.usda.gov. For all other general questions, send to Tech Center address listed below.