USDA Symbol Food Safety and Inspection Service
United States Department of Agriculture
Washington, D.C. 20250-3700

News and Information

January 8, 1998

TO: Plant Managers
FROM: Mark Mina
Deputy Administrator
Field Operations
SUBJECT: Dioxin in Livestock, Poultry and Eggs

Several callers have requested clarification to Food Safety and Inspection Service official advisory letter of September 17, 1997, concerning dioxin in livestock and poultry and eggs. Specifically, questions concern whether or not the 1.0 ppT level of concern for 2,3,7,8-TCDD remains in effect.

FDA’s 1.0 ppT level of concern for 2,3,7,8-TCDD in meat, poultry and egg products applies when the source of the dioxin is traceable to the ball clay contamination incident. FSIS believes that the original concerns from animals that had been exposed to contaminated feed have been resolved. However, producers of livestock and poultry are expected to take appropriate precautions to ensure that they do not re-expose their animals by recycling offal or animal fat from exposed animals into animal feed, use of contaminated bedding, or use of any contaminated feed that was not destroyed or returned to suppliers of such feed.

Further, if producers or packers are aware of certain categories of livestock or poultry, such as broiler-fryer breeding hens, which may contain unacceptable levels of 2,3,7,8-TCDD, it is their responsibility to prevent such animals from reaching the marketplace.

FSIS intends to conduct a sampling program of meat, poultry and egg products and test them for dioxin. If establishments, producers, or packers are aware of any dioxin test results, whether or not related to the ball clay contamination incident, FSIS would appreciate obtaining copies of such test results for possible future use in risk assessment and risk management activities. Please send this information to :

Dr. Paul Thompson, Director
USDA, FSIS, Field Operations
Technical Service Center
106 South 15th St.
Suite 904
Omaha, NE 68102
Phone: 402-221-7400
Fax: 402-221-7438

 page divider

For Further Information Contact:

FSIS Home Page | USDA Home Page