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Objectives

The objective of this material is to provide FSIS employees with a general background on animal production (preharvest) food safety. The primary audience is all Veterinary Medical Officers (VMOs) and their technical advisors and supervisors in the regulation of meat and/or poultry slaughter establishments in which the HACCP Final Rule will be implemented in January 1998. Additional audiences include Egg Product Inspectors, Headquarters VMOs, and other appropriate staff officers. This information will be a resource that will enable you to better assess industry Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) plans that address supplier food safety assurances.

More specifically, this background is designed to help you:
  Understand the different educational programs livestock and poultry commodities have for good management/production practices, which form the foundation for reducing public health (chemical, physical, and microbial) risks in livestock and poultry. 
Interpret the limitations of residue diagnostic tests and testing procedures used on live animals. 
Review the current knowledge about the ecology and epidemiology of priority public health pathogens carried in and on live animals to slaughter. 
   
  This knowledge will assist you in: 
  Understanding the difference between a quality assurance (educational) program and ensuring food safety 
Evaluating the status and limitations of verifiable commodity residue avoidance programs, and determining reasonable options available to establishments when considering residue control. 
Knowing where available resources are for reference on priority human pathogens carried in and on live animals, and commodity educational efforts in good management practices. 
  Evaluating the difficulty slaughter establishments have when writing a HACCP plan with present lack of scientific knowledge of animal production (pre-slaughter) critical control points for pathogen reduction.
  Being able to provide feedback to the Animal Production Food Safety Program Staff on how establishments are addressing incoming animals in their HACCP plans and whether or not animal suppliers are successfully implementing HACCP-compatible systems.