[Federal Register: July 31, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 146)]
[Notices]               
[Page 41702-41703]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr31jy07-27]                         

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Notices
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains documents other than rules 
or proposed rules that are applicable to the public. Notices of hearings 
and investigations, committee meetings, agency decisions and rulings, 
delegations of authority, filing of petitions and applications and agency 
statements of organization and functions are examples of documents 
appearing in this section.

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[[Page 41702]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Food Safety and Inspection Service

[Docket No. FSIS-2007-0026]

 
Public Health Based Inspection System in Poultry Slaughter

AGENCY: Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of public meeting.

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SUMMARY: The Food Safety and Inspection Service will hold a public 
meeting to discuss public health based inspection in poultry slaughter 
to address Campylobacter, Salmonella, and other issues of public health 
concern. FSIS is seeking public input on the ideas, concepts, data, and 
analyses it will use to form the basis of a technical plan. The public 
meeting will afford FSIS and its stakeholders an opportunity to discuss 
the rationale and process for the Agency's enhanced approach, as well 
as the background leading up to its current thinking on the concept.

DATES: FSIS will hold the public meeting on Tuesday, August 7, 2007, 9 
a.m. to 1 p.m.

ADDRESSES: The meeting will be held at George Mason University, School 
of Public Policy, Arlington Original Building, Room 244, 3401 Fairfax 
Drive, Arlington, Virginia 22201. Directions to the site and the agenda 
will be posted on the FSIS Web site at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/Meetings_&_Events/index.asp
.

    The meeting will be audio cast for those who cannot attend in 
person. Members of the public are encouraged to pre-register for the 
meeting. Online registration information and audio information will be 
located at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/Meetings_&_Events/index.asp
.

    FSIS welcomes comments on the topics to be discussed at the public 
meeting. The Agency's technical papers relating to the topic will be 
posted at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/Meetings_&_Events/index.asp
.

    Comments on these papers and questions may be submitted by any of 
the following methods:
    Electronic mail: An electronic mail box has been established 
specifically for risk-based inspection (RBI) comments for the public 
meeting on August 7. Comments may be submitted to: 
riskbasedinspection@fsis.usda.gov.

    Mail, including floppy disks or CD-ROMs: Send to Ellyn Blumberg, 
RBI Public Meeting, United States Department of Agriculture, Food 
Safety and Inspection Service, 14th & Independence Avenue, SW., Mail 
Drop 405 Aerospace, Washington, DC 20250.
    Hand- or courier-delivered items: Deliver to Ellyn Blumberg at 901 
D Street, SW., Washington, DC. Have security guard call (202) 690-6520.
    Facsimile: Fax documents to (202) 690-6519.
    All submissions received must include the Agency name and docket 
number FSIS-2007-0026. The comments also will be posted on the Agency's 
Web site at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations_&_policies/Risk_Based_Inspection/
.


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Keith Payne for technical information 
at (202) 690-6522 or e-mail keith.payne@fsis.usda.gov; Sally Fernandez 
for meeting information at (202) 690-6524, Fax (202) 690-6519, or e-
mail sally.fernandez@fsis.usda.gov. Persons requiring a sign language 
interpreter or other special accommodations should notify the Agency 
contacts no later than July 26, 2007, at the numbers above or by e-
mail.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is the public health 
regulatory agency in the U.S. Department of Agriculture responsible for 
ensuring that the nation's commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg 
products is safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged. FSIS 
is accountable for protecting the lives and well-being of 295 million 
U.S. citizens and millions more around the world.
    To meet the realities of food safety and public health challenges, 
FSIS intends to enhance its inspection system and to develop and 
implement new, science-based policies. FSIS is considering proposing a 
new inspection system in poultry slaughter establishments that will 
improve public health. Although rulemaking is not expected immediately, 
FSIS is seeking public input on the ideas, concepts, data, and analyses 
that it will use to form the basis for a technical plan and in the 
development of a future proposed rule.
    The Agency's thinking has evolved and benefited from its experience 
with the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP)-based 
Inspection Models Project (HIMP). The new system will be designed to 
provide more time and more flexibility than the current systems for 
FSIS personnel to conduct focused, off-line verification activities 
according to risk factors at each establishment and at points in 
slaughter and processing where food safety hazards and associated risks 
may be introduced. The public meeting will afford FSIS and its 
stakeholders an opportunity to discuss the rationale and process for 
the Agency's enhanced approach, as well as for the Agency to present 
the background that has led the Agency to its current thinking on the 
concept. In addition, the Agency will present the scientific 
foundations for future decision-making, including how to address 
Salmonella and Campylobacter and the use of generic E. coli as an 
indicator of process control.
    All interested parties are welcome to attend the meeting and to 
submit written comments and suggestions through September 7, 2007. The 
comments and the official transcript of the meeting, when they become 
available, will be posted on the Agency's Web site at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations_&_policies/Risk_Based_Inspection/.
 

All comments received in response to this notice will be considered 
part of the public record.

Additional Public Notification

    Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy 
development is important. Consequently, in an effort to ensure that 
minorities, women, and persons with disabilities are aware of this 
notice, FSIS will announce it online through the FSIS Web site located 
at:

[[Page 41703]]

http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations/2007_Notices_Index/.

    FSIS also will make copies of this Federal Register publication 
available through the FSIS Constituent Update, which is used to provide 
information regarding FSIS policies, procedures, regulations, Federal 
Register notices, FSIS public meetings, and other types of information 
that could affect or would be of interest to constituents and 
stakeholders. The Update is communicated via Listserv, a free 
electronic mail subscription service for industry, trade and farm 
groups, consumer interest groups, allied health professionals, and 
other individuals who have asked to be included. The Update is 
available on the FSIS Web site. Through the Listserv and Web site, FSIS 
is able to provide information to a much broader and more diverse 
audience. In addition, FSIS offers an e-mail subscription service, 
which provides automatic and customized access to selected food safety 
news and information. This service is available at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/news_and_events/email_subscription/.
 Subscription 

service options include recalls and export information, as well as 
regulations, directives, and notices. Customers can add or delete 
subscriptions themselves and have the option to password protect their 
account.

    Done at Washington, DC, on: July 26, 2007.
Alfred V. Almanza,
Administrator.
 [FR Doc. E7-14805 Filed 7-30-07; 8:45 am]

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