| USDA to Host NACMPI Public Meeting
The National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection will hold a public meeting on Sept. 29 and 30 to review and discuss issues related to data collection, analysis, response and transparency, and strengthening policy and collaboration in pre-harvest food safety.
Members will meet on Wednesday, Sept. 29, from 12:30 to 5:00 p.m., and Thursday, Sept. 30, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The meetings will be held in the conference room at the south end of the USDA South Building cafeteria, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C.
To register, go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/
Meetings_&_Events/index.asp . FSIS welcomes comments from Sept. 16 through Oct. 18 on the topics discussed at the NACMPI public meeting. Comments may be submitted through e-mail at NACMPI@fsis.usda.gov.
For more information on the content of the meeting, contact Josh Stull at (202) 720-9113 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For general meeting and logistical information, contact Tiffanie Newman at (202) 720-9113 or email@example.com.
Register for Public Health Information System Web Seminars
FSIS will host a series of web seminars to introduce a new FSIS comprehensive data system called the Public Health Information System (PHIS) as part of its effort to collect, consolidate and analyze data.
The presentations provide an overview of PHIS and how it will impact requirements for import certification, export certifications and owners and operators of domestic establishments.
There are two meetings scheduled for each topic:
To register for these web seminars, go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/
Replays of the web seminars and meeting transcripts will be made available on the FSIS website at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/PHIS.
Joint Public Meeting to Measure Progress on Food Safety
FSIS, in collaboration with FDA and CDC, will host a third joint public meeting on "Measuring Progress on Food Safety: Current Status and Future Directions," on Oct. 20, in Portland, Ore.
Information will be gathered from various stakeholders, including the food industry, state regulators and consumer groups, on measurements they recommend or are using to assess performance in food safety.
To give an oral presentation at the meeting, contact Juanita Yates at (301) 436-1731 or firstname.lastname@example.org by Sept. 24.
Look for additional details about the meeting on the FSIS' website at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/
Export Requirement Updates
The Library of Export Requirements has been updated to reflect changes in export requirements for the following countries:
Strategic Data Analysis Plan and Public Health Decision Criteria Report Released
The significance to FSIS of an integrated infrastructure using high-quality data and feedback on that data, for analysis, making decisions, managing risks, and minimizing costs, cannot be overstated. FSIS released today, the agency's Strategic Data Analysis Plan and the Public Health Decision Criteria Report. FSIS is committed to making its strategic planning as open and transparent as possible and seeks input from all relevant stakeholders.
The effective use of data is a core principle of the President's Food Safety Working Group and enhancing the development and maintenance of an integrated data collection and analysis system is an FSIS strategic goal. This Strategic Data Analysis Plan is designed to directly support these principles and goal.
The Public Health Decision Criteria Report describes, in detail, FSIS' approach to a data-driven process for the allocation of agency resources. These criteria provide a method for allocating agency resources in performing certain types of inspection procedures. Criteria are not dependent upon the improvements to data collection outlined in the Strategic Data Analysis Plan. Though once improvements in the plan have been implemented, the data will again be evaluated to determine if any of the criteria should be replaced or changed.
Leading up to today's release, FSIS sought a great deal of input from stakeholders and third parties such as the National Academy of Sciences, and continues to address recommendations made by USDA's Office of the Inspector General.
To read the Strategic Data Analysis Plan, go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/NACMPI/Sep2010/
2010_Strategic_Data_Analysis_Plan.pdf (PDF Only). To read the Public Health Decision Criteria Report, go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/OPPDE/NACMPI/Sep2010/
2010_Public_Health_Decsion_Criteria_Report.pdf (PDF Only). The report and plan will be presented Sept. 29 meeting of the National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection in Washington, D.C. ( See above). Comments should be submitted electronically by emailing NACMPI@fsis.usda.gov.
Contacting the Policy Development Division
The Policy Development Division (PDD) will be closed on Tuesday, Sept. 28, for an all-day, off-site meeting. PDD will not be answering questions by phone.
Individuals may submit questions through askFSIS ( http://askfsis.custhelp.com), and responses will be available Wednesday, Sept. 29.
Other divisions within the Office of Policy and Program Development will remain open.
To contact the Labeling and Program Delivery Division, call (301) 504-0878. For questions related to sampling, contact the Risk and Innovations Management Division at (301) 504-0884. For questions related to exporting, contact the International Policy Division at (202) 690-4354.
Individuals may also submit questions for these offices through askFSIS.
PHIS - The Integrated System
As you've probably read in previous issues of the Constituent Update, FSIS is launching a dynamic data analytics system called the Public Health Information System (PHIS). It is an integrated, web-based system that will make results of inspection findings and other FSIS data available daily to personnel across the agency. PHIS operates through the interaction of four components: domestic inspection, import activities, export activities and predictive analytics.
Domestic Inspection— Inspection personnel will have flexibility to determine when to perform scheduled verification procedures based upon plant production and history of previous inspection findings. The entire sampling process will be completely automated. Plant profile information will be more comprehensive.
Import Activities— PHIS will replace the Automated Import Information System (AIIS) and will automate paper-based processes, such as importers or their agents submitting applications for import inspection. PHIS will also provide the way for electronic product certificates to be received directly, government to government.
Export Activities— For exports, PHIS will automate the establishment application process and the issuance of paper and electronic export certificates. PHIS will be able to transmit the electronic export certificates from government to government.
Predictive Analytics— Predictive analytics basically means all the math, other analysis and reporting that uses data in PHIS to identify food safety risks and detect problems. For the first time, in-plant inspection personnel and supervisors will have this analysis to get in front of outbreaks and recalls and better protect consumers. PHIS will be a rigorous public health decision-making tool, allowing FSIS to predict problems before they occur and respond more quickly to ones that do happen.
From Sept. 20 to 30, FSIS is offering web seminars for regulated establishments, others doing business with the agency and stakeholders interested in the system. The presentations provide an overview of PHIS its impact on requirements for import certification, export certifications and owners and operators of domestic establishments. Go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/
Regulatory_Web_Seminars/index.asp to register and review meeting details.
PHIS Resource Page Now Online
Information about the dynamic, user-friendly data analytics system, the Public Health Information System, is now available on the FSIS website at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/PHIS.
Get Answers at AskFSIS
AskFSIS is a web-based technology and policy question-and-answer forum on topics such as exporting, labeling, inspection, programs and procedures.
In addition, askFSIS offers Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds that link back to the Q&As. Visit http://askfsis.custhelp.com/ to find the answers to your questions. Recently posted topics include:
Fire Devastation, Food Safety Tips for Those Recovering from Wildfires
Each year, two million American homes and families experience losses from wildfires or flames sparked by accidental fires.
"Particularly during times of emergency, food safety is a critical public health issue," said FSIS Administrator Al Almanza. "In the aftermath of fire, whether it's the whole house or a kitchen fire, people try to save what they can — including food. Generally, saving food that has been in a fire is never a good idea. FSIS wants to make consumers aware that information is readily available to help them protect their food."
FSIS offers recommendations to keep you and your family safe to minimize the likelihood of foodborne illness after a fire. Go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/
NR_091310_01/index.asp to review these food safety tips.
The USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline is available toll free at (888) 674-6854 in English and Spanish from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.
General consumer food safety information is also available at www.foodsafety.gov.
Tune in to podcasts on selecting, handling and preparing meat and poultry products to reduce the risk of foodborne illness. FSIS released these podcasts helpful to consumers.
Spanish language consumer podcasts are available at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/En_Espanol/Podcasts_SP/index.asp.
To continue automatically receiving podcasts, renew your subscription. For assistance, e-mail email@example.com.
Updates on FSIS Testing for E. coli
FSIS has resumed the reporting of weekly updates on raw beef E. coli verification sampling program testing results. The temporary suspension of results was due to internal computer upgrades that resulted in some incompatibility in the conversion of data fields.
Go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/science/
Ecoli_Positive_Results/index.asp for previous and current year results.
Follow Us on Twitter
Find food safety information for at-risk people. FSIS offers tips and resources to keep consumers and other interested groups informed of the latest agency news and events.
Follow FSIS on Twitter at http://twitter.com/USDAFoodSafety.