|Progress Report on Salmonella Testing of Raw Meat and Poultry Products, 1998-20101
In calendar year 2010, FSIS analyzed 29,734 verification samples across eight meat and poultry product classes with the following
percent positive rate of Salmonella per product class: broilers (6.7%), market hog (2.4%), cow/bull (0.5%), steer/heifer (0.1%),
ground beef (2.2%), ground chicken (18.8%), ground turkey (10.2%) and turkey (4.6%). The Agency believes that the higher the percent
positive rate, the greater the potential for the public to consume a product that can be attributed to foodborne illness. FSIS schedules
approximately 75 sample sets monthly using a risk-based algorithm to target establishments demonstrating variable or poor process control
(i.e, establishments with high percent positive rates). Previous Salmonella Annual Reports can be found on the FSIS web site.
Since 2006, FSIS has focused sampling on raw carcass product classes believing that improvement in process control in these product
classes will result in improvement in process control in raw ground product classes. As of December 2010, 84% of establishments are in
Category 1. Based on eight product classes, the following percentages of establishments are in Category 1: broilers (85%), market hog (86%),
cow/bull (88%), steer/heifer (88%), ground beef (79%), ground chicken (90%), ground turkey (95%), and turkey (82%).
2010 Annual Report
The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) uses data from its regulatory testing programs to monitor the effectiveness of its
Pathogen Reduction; Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point Systems; Final Rule and to assess process control in individual establishments.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has incorporated the target of 6.8 cases of salmonellosis/100,000 persons into the
Healthy People 2010 objectives,
which FSIS recognizes as appropriate guidance for the Agency's strategic planning to strengthen public health protection.
In 1996, FSIS established PR/HACCP to verify that establishments demonstrate consistent process control for preventing, eliminating, or
reducing the contamination of raw meat and poultry products with disease-causing bacteria, by setting Salmonella performance
standards that slaughter establishments and establishments that produce raw ground products should meet. Raw products with established
performance standards or guidance include: carcasses of cows/bulls, steers/heifers, market hogs, broilers, and turkeys. Processed products
measured by performance standards include: ground beef, ground chicken, and ground turkey. The performance standards are based on the
prevalence of Salmonella as determined from the Agency's nationwide microbiological baseline studies, which, except for the turkey
carcass product class, were conducted prior to PR/HACCP implementation. The performance standards and guidance are expressed in terms of
the maximum number of Salmonella-positive samples acceptable per sample set. The number of samples in a sample set varies by
product, and the maximum number of positive samples acceptable in a set provides an 80% probability of an establishment passing when
it is operating at the standard.
Prior to 2006, there were two phases of the FSIS regulatory program for Salmonella in raw products: non-targeted and targeted
testing. Non-targeted or "A" set tests were collected at establishments randomly selected from the population of eligible establishments,
with a goal of scheduling every eligible establishment at least once a year. Other codes (such as "B", "C", and "D") represented
sample sets collected from establishments targeted for follow-up testing following a failed set. Beginning with the
third 2006 quarterly report,
reports have data summarized from all sets collected. (Note: Earlier reports have not been retrospectively changed). Consequently, under
Table A1, the annual reports from 2005 and earlier reflect
results from only the "A" set samples.
In February 2006, FSIS issued a federal
register notice: "Salmonella Verification Sample Result Reporting: Agency Policy and use in Public Health Protection"
announcing how FSIS would report and use results from its Salmonella verification sampling program for meat and poultry establishments.
In this Notice, the Agency announced its intention to redirect its Salmonella verification sampling program and announced 11 new
initiatives to encourage establishments to reassess their food safety systems to achieve and maintain consistent process control. As one
of these new initiatives, FSIS increased testing frequency in establishments with variable or highly variable process control compared
to those showing consistent process control.
Since June 2006, establishments have been scheduled based on risk-based
criteria designed to focus FSIS resources on establishments with the most samples positive for Salmonella and the
greatest number of samples with serotypes
most frequently associated with human salmonellosis, (relative to each product class) as defined by CDC.2
Furthermore, establishments are grouped into one of three categories. Category 1 includes establishments whose two most recent
Salmonella set results are equal to or less than 50% of the performance standard or guidance. The Agency considers these
establishments to demonstrate consistent process control. Category 2 includes establishments where at least one of their two most recent
set results was greater than 50% of the performance standards or guidance without exceeding it, or they have passed their most recent set
but failed the one prior to that one. These establishments are considered to have variable process control. An additional subcategory 2T was
created in 2008 under Category 2 (reported in 2008 second quarterly report and onwards).
An establishment with its last set ≤ 50% of the performance standard or guidance and the prior set at > 50% of the performance
standard will now be sub-categorized as 2T, with T standing for transitioning to Category 1. Category 3 includes establishments whose most
recent Salmonella set result has exceeded the performance standard for its product class. The Agency considers these establishments
to display highly variable process control.
This report presents percent positive Salmonella sample results and percent sample sets meeting the Salmonella performance
standards listed by product class and PR/HACCP establishment size for 2010 and previous years (Table A1 and A2).
Data is presented in aggregate form for the periods 1998-2003 and 1998-2010.
Individual sample results (Table A1) are counted in the year the
sample is collected. Sample sets (Table A2) are counted in the year
they are completed. For example, samples from a broiler set collected in 2009 are counted in the 2009 results (Table A1).
However if the sample set was completed in 2010, the set was counted in 2010
(Table A2). In Table A3,
establishments are listed by product classes and percentage within categories 1, 2T, 2, and 3 for each product class.
Figure A1 (PDF Only) compares Salmonella percent positive
results from 1998 to 2010 with baseline prevalence by product class and year. Percentages of sample sets meeting Salmonella performance
standards by product class from 1998 to 2010 are presented in Figure A2 (PDF Only).
FSIS continues to direct resources toward testing broiler establishments. In 2010
FSIS continues to direct resources toward testing broiler establishments. In 2010 (Table A1),
6,829 Salmonella samples were analyzed from broiler establishments. The total percentage of positive samples was 6.7% in 2010,
down from 7.2% 7.3%, 8.5%, and 11.4% in 2009, 2008, 2007, and 2006, respectively. In addition, of the 134 sets completed in 2010 at
broiler establishments, 94.8% met the Salmonella performance standard compared to 95.7% (140 sets completed) in 2009, 97.3%
(149 sets completed) in 2008 and 97.2% (215 sets completed) in 2007
By the end of 2010, 147 broiler establishments eligible for federal testing were in Category 1, comprising 85% of all broiler establishments
(Table A3) which was up from 82% in 2009. Furthermore in 2010,
eight broiler establishments (5%) were in Category 2T. Twelve broiler establishments were in Category 2 (7%). Five broiler establishments
were in Category 3, making up 3% of all broiler establishments. In 2009, 82% of broiler establishments eligible for Salmonella
sampling were in Category 1.
In 2010, 4,224 samples were analyzed. The total percent of Salmonella positive sample tests was 2.4% and was up from 2.3% in 2009
(Table A1). Of the 86 sets completed in 2010, 96.5% met the Salmonella performance standard for this product class.
Eighty-six percent of market hog establishments were in Category 1, representing 162 establishments. Eight percent of the establishments
(16) were in 2T. Five percent of the establishments were in Category 2, representing 10 establishments. One establishment exceeded the
performance standard (Category 3). In 2009, 85% of all market hog establishments eligible for Salmonella testing were in Category 1.
In 2010, 1,764 samples were analyzed at eligible establishments with 0.5% of the samples positive for Salmonella. This compared to
2,036 samples analyzed in 2009 (0.6% positive), 2,301 samples analyzed in 2008, (0.5% positive) and 3,969 samples analyzed (1.1% positive)
in 2007. Thirty-two sets were completed in 2010 with 93.8% meeting the Salmonella performance standard for this product class.
Eighty-eight percent of cow bull establishments (64 establishments) were in Category 1, 8% (6 establishments) were in Category 2T, 3%
(2 establishments) in Category 2, and 1% (1 establishment) was in Category 3. In 2009, 89% of cow/bull establishments eligible for
Salmonella testing were in Category 1.
During 2010, 4,918 samples were analyzed with 0.1% positive for Salmonella. In 2009 4,939 samples were analyzed (0.1% positive),
in 2008, 4,965 samples were analyzed (0.2% positive) and in 2007, 4,355 samples were analyzed (0.2% positive). In 2010, 62 sets were completed,
with 95.2% of these meeting the performance standard. This compares to 2009, when 68 Salmonella sets were completed and 97.1% met the performance
standard, and to 2008, when 64 Salmonella sets were completed and 92.2% met the performance standard.
Eighty-eight percent (87 establishments) were in Category 1 at the end of 2010, 5% (5 establishments) were in Category 2T, with 6%
(6 establishments) in Category 2 and 1% (1 establishment) in Category 3. In 2009, 85% of steer/heifer establishments eligible for
Salmonella testing were in Category 1.
In 2010, 9,256 ground beef samples were analyzed and 2.2% tested positive for Salmonella. This compares to 2009, when 8,541 samples
were analyzed (1.9% positive), and to 2008 when 16,763 samples were analyzed (2.4% positive). One hundred seventy five sets were completed,
96.6% meeting the performance standard, compared to 2009 when 195 sets were completed (95.9% met the performance standard), and 2008 when
363 sets were completed (87.3% met the performance standard).
Seventy-nine percent (238 establishments) were in Category 1, 8% percent (25 establishments) were in Category 2T, 11% (32 establishments) in
Category 2, and 3% (8 establishments) in Category 3. In 2009, 76% of ground beef establishments eligible for Salmonella testing were
in Category 1.
In 2010, 426 samples were analyzed, with a total of 18.8% percent positive. The total percent of sample sets meeting the performance
standard was 100% with two sets completed.
Ninety percent (9 establishments) of ground chicken establishments were in Category 1 at the end of 2010, with 10% (1 establishment) in
Category 2, and no establishments in Category 2T or Category 3. In 2009, 67% of ground chicken establishments eligible for Salmonella
sampling were in Category 1.
In 2010, 873 samples were analyzed with a total percent positive at 10.2%, compared to 10.7% in 2009 (608 samples) and 15.4% in 2008
(876 samples). Nine sets were completed and all 9 passed for 2010, similar to 2009, when all 14 sets completed passed and to 2008 when all
18 sets completed passed.
Ninety-five percent (20 establishments) of ground turkey establishments were in Category 1, 5% (1 establishment) were in Category 2T, with
no establishments in either Category 2 or Category 3. In 2009, 91% of ground turkey establishments eligible for Salmonella sampling
were in Category 1.
NOTE: The sampling frames for ground chicken and turkey are being re-examined. FSIS is considering redefining ground
poultry product eligible for testing as all raw comminuted chicken, turkey, or chicken/turkey/beef/lamb/pork mix including mechanically
separated poultry produced at federally-regulated establishments that is not further processed into RTE product.
In 2010, 1,444 turkey samples were analyzed, with a total percent positive at 4.6%, up from 3.8% positive in 2009. Of the 30 sets completed
in 2010, all sets (i.e. 100% of establishments) met the Salmonella performance standard.
Eighty two percent (27 establishments) were in Category 1, with 3 establishments (9%) in Category 2T, 2 establishments (6%) in Category 2, and
1 establishment (3%) in Category 3. In 2009, 91% of turkey establishments eligible for Salmonella testing were in Category 1.
This report reflects data collected during 2010. The Agency has reviewed the progress made since 2006 and will issue a report this year.
Note: Restructuring how Salmonella sets are scheduled means that comparison
of results from 2006 onwards to previous years would not be appropriate. For such comparisons, the results of upcoming nationwide
baseline studies can provide valid estimates of the prevalence of certain pathogens of public health concern and will permit valid
statistical comparisons to be made over time.
April 27, 2011
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