[Federal Register: August 22, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 164)]
[Notices]               
[Page 49643-49644]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr22au08-27]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Food Safety and Inspection Service

[Docket No. FSIS-2008-0030]

 
National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods

AGENCY: Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of public meeting.

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SUMMARY: This notice announces that the National Advisory Committee on 
Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF) will hold public meetings 
of the full Committee and Subcommittees on September 22-26, 2008. The 
Committee will discuss: (1) Parameters for inoculated-pack challenge 
study protocols, and (2) Determination of the most appropriate 
technologies for the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) to adopt 
in performing routine and baseline microbiological analyses.

DATES: The full Committee will hold an open meeting on Friday, 
September 26, 2008, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Subcommittee on 
parameters for inoculated-pack challenge study protocols will hold open 
meetings on Monday, September 22, and Tuesday, September 23, 2008, from 
8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Subcommittee on determination of the most 
appropriate technologies for the FSIS to adopt in performing routine 
and baseline microbiological analyses will hold open meetings on 
Wednesday, September 24, and Thursday, September 25, 2008, from 8:30 
a.m. to 5 p.m.

ADDRESSES: The September 22-25, 2008, Subcommittee meetings will be 
held at the Aerospace Center, 901 D Street, SW., Rooms 369-371, 
Washington, DC 20024. The September 26, 2008, full Committee meeting 
will be held in the conference room at the south end of the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture (USDA) cafeteria located in the South 
Building, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20250. All 
documents related to the full Committee meeting will be available for 
public inspection in the FSIS Docket Room, U.S. Department of 
Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Room 2534 South Building, 
Washington, DC 20250, between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through 
Friday, as soon as they become available. The NACMCF documents will 
also be available on the Internet at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/
regulations/2008_Notices_Index/.
    FSIS will finalize an agenda on or before the meeting dates and 
post it on the FSIS Web page at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News/
Meetings_&_Events/.
    Please note that the meeting agenda is subject to change due to the 
time required for Committee discussions; thus, sessions could start or 
end earlier or later than anticipated. Please plan accordingly if you 
would like to attend a particular session or participate in a public 
comment period.
    Also, the official transcript of the September 26, 2008, full 
Committee meeting, when it becomes available, will be kept in the FSIS 
Docket Room at the above address and will also be posted on http://
www.fsis.usda.gov/About/NACMCF_Meetings/.
    The mailing address for the contact person is: Karen Thomas-Sharp, 
U.S. Department of Agriculture, FSIS, Office of Public Health Science, 
1400 Independence Avenue, SW., 333 Aerospace Center, Washington, DC 
20250-3766.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Persons interested in making a 
presentation, submitting technical papers, or providing comments at the 
September 26, plenary session should contact Karen Thomas-Sharp, phone 
(202) 690-6620, fax (202) 690-6334, e-mail Karen.thomas-
sharp@fsis.usda.gov, or at the mailing address above. Persons requiring 
a sign language interpreter or other special accommodations should 
notify Mrs. Thomas-Sharp by September 17, 2008.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The NACMCF was established in 1988, in response to a recommendation 
of the National Academy of Sciences for an interagency approach to 
microbiological criteria for foods, and in response to a recommendation 
of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations, as 
expressed in the Rural Development, Agriculture, and Related Agencies 
Appropriation Bill for fiscal year 1988. The charter for the NACMCF is 
available for viewing on the FSIS Internet Web page at http://
www.fsis.usda.gov/About/NACMCF_Charter/.
    The NACMCF provides scientific advice and recommendations to the 
Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of Health and Human Services 
on public health issues relative to the safety and wholesomeness of the 
U.S. food supply, including development of microbiological criteria and 
review and evaluation of epidemiological and risk assessment data and 
methodologies for assessing microbiological hazards in foods. The 
Committee also provides scientific advice and recommendations to the 
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Departments of 
Commerce and Defense.
    Dr. H. Scott Hurd, Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety, U.S. 
Department of Agriculture, is the Committee Chair; Dr. Stephen Sundlof, 
Director of the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Food Safety 
and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), is the Vice-Chair; and Gerri Ransom, 
FSIS, is the Executive Secretary.
     At the subcommittee meetings the week of September 22-25, 
2008 the groups will discuss:
     Parameters for inoculated-pack challenge study protocols, 
and
     Determination of the most appropriate technologies for the 
FSIS to adopt in performing routine and baseline microbiological 
analyses.

Documents Reviewed by NACMCF

    FSIS intends to make available to the public all materials that are 
reviewed and considered by NACMCF regarding its deliberations. 
Generally, these materials will be made available as soon as possible 
after the full Committee meeting. Further, FSIS intends to make these 
materials available in electronic format on the FSIS Web page, as well 
as

[[Page 49644]]

in hard copy format in the FSIS Docket Room. Often, an attempt is made 
to make the materials available at the start of the full Committee 
meeting when sufficient time is allowed in advance to do so.
    Disclaimer: NACMCF documents and comments posted on the FSIS Web 
site are electronic conversions from a variety of source formats. In 
some cases, document conversion may result in character translation or 
formatting errors. The original document is the official, legal copy.
    In order to meet the electronic and information technology 
accessibility standards in Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, 
NACMCF may add alternate text descriptors for non-text elements 
(graphs, charts, tables, multimedia, etc.). These modifications only 
affect the online copies of the documents.
    Copyrighted documents will not be posted on the FSIS Web site, but 
will be available for inspection in the FSIS Docket Room.

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 page located 
at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations/2008_Notices_Index/. FSIS 
will also 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 groups, 
consumer interest groups, health professionals, and other individuals 
who have asked to be included. The Update is also available on the FSIS 
Web page. Through the Listserv and Web page, 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/. Options range from recalls to export information 
to regulations, directives and notices. Customers can add or delete 
subscriptions themselves, and they have the option to password protect 
their accounts.

    Done at Washington, DC on August 19, 2008.
Alfred V. Almanza,
Administrator.
 [FR Doc. E8-19540 Filed 8-21-08; 8:45 am]

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