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Compliance Guides Index

Use the Compliance Guides Index as your first resource in maintaining compliance with FSIS policies. For the most recent regulatory information, please visit the Regulations, Directives & Notices page.
 
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Compliance Guides Available for Comment

There are no guides available for comment at this time.


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Escherichia coli 

Pre-Harvest Management Controls and Intervention Options for Reducing Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli Shedding in Cattle: An Overview of Current Research (Aug 2014)
This document provides beef slaughter establishments with an informational resource on pre-harvest management controls and interventions for reducing Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) shedding in beef cattle production.

Compliance Guideline for Establishments Sampling Beef Trimmings for Shiga Toxin-Producing Escherichia coli (STEC) Organisms or Virulence Markers (Aug 2014; PDF Only)
This Compliance Guideline is meant to help beef slaughter/fabrication establishments that manufacture beef trimmings develop and implement statistical process control procedures to assess the effectiveness of their controls for preventing contamination during the slaughter operation.

Compliance Guideline for E. coli O157:H7 Sampled and Tested Claims for Boneless Beef Manufacturing Trimmings ("Trim") (Aug 2014; PDF Only)This document provides guidance on the use of labels bearing an FSIS sketch approved Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) sampled and tested claim on beef trim.

Pre-Harvest Management Controls and Intervention Options for Reducing Escherichia Coli O157:H7 Shedding in Cattle (Aug 2014; PDF Only)
This document provides beef slaughter establishments with an informational resource on pre-harvest management controls and interventions for reducing Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) shedding in beef cattle production

Sanitation Guidance for Beef Grinders (Jan 2012; PDF Only)
The purpose of this guidance is to help small and very small establishments develop and implement sanitation procedures that better protect public health and to maintain uniform production records for the production of non-intact raw beef products. It includes a production record template, Fresh Ground Beef Production Log/Tracking List, that industry may use to enable efficient traceback in the event of a foodborne illness investigation.

  • Video::
    • N60 Sampling Update (WMV)
      The video demonstrates the techniques used for FSIS N60 sampling. Topics include a description of the N60 sampling procedures, needed supplies, changes in sampling procedures, and sample packaging and shipping.

Draft Guidance for Small and Very Small Establishments on Sampling Beef Products for Escherichia coli O157:H7 (Aug 12, 2008; PDF Only)
The purpose of this guidance is to help small and very small establishments develop sampling plans for monitoring the effectiveness of process controls that are designed to prevent Escherichia coli O157:H7 contaminated product from leaving the establishment.

Guidance for Minimizing the Risk of Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella in Beef Slaughter Operations (2002; PDF Only)
The guidance provided in this document is predicated on the belief that Escherichia coli (E. coli) O157:H7 and Salmonella are likely to be food safety hazards reasonably likely to occur in beef production.

Guidelines for Escherichia coli Testing for Process Control Verification in Cattle and Swine Slaughter Establishments (1996; PDF Only)
Under the Pathogen Reduction/HACCP regulation, cattle and swine slaughter establishments are required to test carcasses for generic E. coli as a means of verifying process control. This document outlines sampling and microbial testing procedures that would meet this requirement.

Guidelines for Escherichia coli Testing for Process Control Verification in Poultry Slaughter Establishments (1996; PDF Only)
Under the Pathogen Reduction/HACCP Regulation, poultry slaughter establishments are required to test carcasses for generic E. coli as a means of verifying process control. This document outlines sampling and microbial testing procedures that would meet this requirement.

Compliance Guidelines for Establishments on the FSIS Microbiological Testing Program & Other Verification Activities for Escherichia coli O157:H7 (Apr 13, 2004; PDF Only)
This guidance pertains to Directives 10,010.1, 5000.2, and 6420.2.


 

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HACCP

FSIS Compliance Guideline HACCP Systems (May 2013; PDF Only)
This guidance document is designed to help very small meat and poultry plants meet the initial validation requirements in 9 CFR 417.4.

Meat and Poultry Hazards and Controls Guide(Oct 4, 2005; PDF Only)
FSIS developed this guide to help FSIS personnel to evaluate all aspects of an establishment's system for producing processed meat and poultry products. Supervisory Guideline for Pathogen Reduction/HACCP Regulatory Requirements (1998; PDF Only)
FSIS provides guidance to Field Operations supervisors on how to assign, guide, direct, and assess the work of inspection personnel performing in-plant Basic and Other Compliance/Noncompliance procedures that are designed to support the inspection system activities and enforcement of regulatory requirements in establishments subject to the Pathogen Reduction-Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) rule.

For additional information access HACCP & Pathogen Reduction


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Inspection Requirements

FSIS Compliance Guide for a Systematic Approach to the Humane Handling of Livestock (Oct 23, 2013; PDF Only)
FSIS developed this guide to promote a systematic approach to achieve compliance with the 9 CFR Part 313 regulatory requirements for humane handling and slaughter of livestock.

“At Least Equal To” Compliance Guideline for State Meat and Poultry Inspection (MPI) Programs for Laboratory Methods (Jun 2013; PDF Only)
This Compliance Guideline supplements the “At Least Equal To” Compliance Guidelines for State Meat and Poultry Inspection Programs. It specifically supplements the guidance material in Component 3 - Product Sampling, of the guideline. Compliance Guide: Data Samples and Guidelines for Using the PGA Message Set for Electronic Completion of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) Application for Import Inspection (FSIS Form 9540-1) (Aug 2013; PDF)
This document is intended as a guide to understanding the FSIS data requirements when an Automated Broker Interface filer (broker or self-filing importer) is using the Automated Commercial Environment System of Customs and Border Protection to provide PGA Message Set data.

Compliance Guidelines for Use of Video or Other Electronic Monitoring or Recording Equipment in Federally Inspected Establishments (Aug 26, 2011; PDF Only)
This guideline was written to provide information to industry on the use of video or other electronic monitoring or recording equipment to help it maintain compliance with federal regulations, including humane treatment of livestock and the use of good commercial practices in poultry.

Import Permit Guide for Products with Small Amounts of Meat and Poultry (Apr 2009; PDF Only) En Español PDF | Chinese PDF | Korean PDF | Vietnamese PDF
This guide will help importers comply with the requirements for bringing these products into the United States.

"At Least Equal to" Guidelines for State Meat and Poultry Cooperative Inspection Programs (Jul 2008; PDF Only)
These guidelines are designed to provide information to State Cooperative Inspection Programs on the criteria that FSIS uses to make its annual determination of whether State Meat and Poultry Inspection (MPI) Programs are "at least equal" to the Federal inspection program.

Compliance Guideline for Small and Very Small Plants Appealing Inspection Decisions (Aug 31, 2006; PDF Only)
FSIS provided guideline to help small and very small plants understand the appeals process and learn how to make an appeal.

Slaughter Inspection

Modernization of Poultry Slaughter Inspection: Chilling Requirements (2014)
This compliance guide contains information regarding how establishments producing ready-to-cook (RTC) poultry can meet the new chilling requirements by implementing former regulatory time and temperature provisions that the final rule on modernization of poultry inspection removed from 9 CFR 381.66 (b) or by following the time and temperature chilling procedures that FSIS approved under the Salmonella Initiative Program (SIP).

Compliance Guideline for Training Establishment Carcass Sorters in the New Poultry Inspection System (Revised Sep 2014)
This compliance guideline recommends training elements and post-mortem inspection standards that FSIS has found effective in training FSIS online inspectors to identify carcasses and parts exhibiting condemnable conditions that are unwholesome and unfit for human food.

Guidance for Determining Whether a Poultry Slaughter or Processing Operation is Exempt from Inspection Requirements of the Poultry Products Inspection Act (Updated Apr 12, 2006; PDF Only)
This guide provides assistance to producers or businesses in determining whether their slaughter or processing operations require United States Department of Agriculture or State inspection, as mandated in the Poultry Products Inspection Act.

Mobile Slaughter Unit Compliance Guide (May 24, 2010; PDF Only)
This guideline is intended for owners and managers of a new or existing red meat or poultry MSU who want their establishment to come under Federal inspection and continue operations in accordance with Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) regulations.


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Labeling

Allergens and Ingredients of Public Health Concern: Identification, Prevention and Control, and Declaration through Labeling
This document provides recommendations for identifying hazards when conducting a hazard analysis and to prevent and control hazards through hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP) plans or Sanitation standard operating procedures (SOPs) or other prerequisite programs with respect to allergens and other ingredients of public health concern.

Labeling that Needs to be Submitted to the Labeling and Program Delivery Staff for Evaluation and Approval (Nov 2013; PDF Only)
This compliance guide provides information about the types of labels and labeling that need to be submitted to the Agency for approval, including specific examples of certain special statements and claims that are not generically approved.

A Guide to Federal Food Labeling Requirements For Meat and Poultry Products (PDF Only)
This manual is designed to assist manufacturers, consumers, and FSIS personnel on the regulatory requirements and policies for labeling products.

Compliance Guide on the Determination of Processing Aids (Apr 8, 2008; PDF Only)
The intent of this guidance is to convey FSIS' approach to determining whether an ingredient may be considered a processing aid.

Guidance on Meaning of "Prohibited Substances" in FSIS Actions on the Use of Ingredients in Meat and Poultry Products (Apr 8, 2008; PDF Only)
FSIS provides guidance on "prohibited substances" to interested parties who wish to use new food ingredients in the manufacture of meat and poultry products.

Labeling Compliance Policy Guide on Poultry Food Product Dating (Aug 23, 2010; PDF Only)
This guide explains the appropriate use of pack dates and slaughter dates on poultry food product labels, provides clarification regarding the regulatory requirements, and addresses current practices.

Labeling Policy Guidance - Uncooked, Breaded, Boneless Poultry Products (Updated Jan 17, 2007; PDF only)
This document provides guidance to the industry on the modifications that are necessary for the labeling of uncooked, breaded (both pre-browned and not pre-browned), boneless poultry products that also may be stuffed or filled, char-marked, or artificially colored.

For additional information access Labeling Guidance


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Listeria monocytogenes 

Best Practices Guidance for Controlling Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) in Retail Delicatessens
This guidance document provides specific recommendations that retailers can take in the delicatessen (deli) area to control Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) contamination of ready-to-eat (RTE) meat and poultry products.

FSIS Compliance Guideline: Controlling Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) in Post-lethality Exposed Ready-to-Eat (RTE) Meat and Poultry Products (Jan 2014; PDF Only)
This compliance guideline provides specific recommendations that establishments producing post-lethality exposed ready-to-eat (RTE) meat and poultry product may follow to meet the requirements of 9 CFR part 430, the Listeria Rule.


FSIS Scheduling Criteria for Routine Lm Risk-Based (RLm) Sampling Program (Mar 21, 2008; PDF Only)
FSIS provides the criteria used to identify establishments to be tested for Listeria monocytogenes in food contact, environmental, and product samples under the Routine Lm Risk-Based (RLm) Sampling Program.

Verification Procedures for the Listeria monocytogenes Regulation and Microbial Sampling of Ready-to-Eat (RTE) Products for the FSIS Verification - FSIS Directive 10240.4 (Feb 3, 2009; PDF Only)
This directive provides direction to CSIs regarding the implementation of the new RLm sampling program including the three projects, RLMCONT, RLMENVR, and RLMPROD, as part of Phase 2 of the Agency's overall L. monocytogenes risk-based verification testing program.
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Microbiological Test Methods and Laboratories

FSIS Compliance Guideline for Validating Cooking Instructions for Mechanically Tenderized Beef Products (Jun 2013; PDF Only)
The purpose of this guidance document is to help establishments develop validated cooking instructions to use on the labels of mechanically tenderized beef products.

FSIS Compliance Guideline for Controlling Meat and Poultry Products Pending FSIS Test Results (Feb 1, 2013; PDF)
This guidance document has been developed to assist domestic establishments and importers of record comply with the Food Safety and Inspection Service's new policy that product FSIS tests for adulterants will not be allowed to move into commerce until acceptable results become available.


Establishment Guidance for the Selection of a Commercial or Private Microbiological Testing Laboratory (Revised Jun 2013; PDF Only)
This guidance document  is provided to establishments producing meat, poultry and processed egg products for use when they are selecting a commercial or private laboratory to analyze establishment microbiological samples.
  • Foodborne Pathogen Test Kits Validated by Independent Organizations | PDF
    FSIS is making available a list of test kits that have been validated for detection of relevant foodborne pathogens (i.e. Salmonella, Campylobacter, E. coli O157:H7, and Listeria spp. including L. monocytogenes).  These lists are intended to be informational and are not an endorsement or approval of any particular method, regardless of its inclusion in the list.

FSIS Guidance for Evaluating Test Kit Performance (PDF Only)
This guidance document is intended to assist the design of validation experiments for methods used to detect bacterial pathogens in matrices such as meat, poultry, and egg products, and environmental samples.


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Ready to Eat Products

Compliance Guideline: Lebanon bologna (Updated Jan 2013; PDF Only)
This guideline articulates how industry can meet FSIS expectations regarding the production of Lebanon bologna.

FSIS Compliance Guideline for Meat and Poultry Jerky Produced by Small and Very Small Plants (Aug 2014; PDF Only)
This guideline is designed to help small and very small meat and poultry establishments that manufacture jerky to identify the key steps in the jerky process needed to ensure safety; and the scientific support available to help develop a safe process and product.

Docket No. 95-033F Performance Standards for the Production of Certain Meat and Poultry Products (Jan 6, 1999) | PDF

FSIS Guidance on Safe Cooking of Non-Intact Meat Chops, Roasts, and Steaks (Apr 2009; PDF Only)
This document provides time and temperature tables with a 5.0 log reduction for lethality.



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Residue

At Least Equal to” Compliance Guideline for State Meat and Poultry Inspection (MPI) Programs for Residue Testing (Dec 2012; PDF Only)
This compliance guide addresses in-plant screening of residues in meat and poultry products.

Compliance Guide for Residue Prevention (May 2013; PDF Only)
This Compliance Guide articulates how industry can meet FSIS expectations regarding residue prevention.


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Salmonella

Compliance Guideline for Controlling Salmonella in Market Hogs
The first edition of the Compliance Guideline contains recommendations for controlling Salmonella in market hogs from pre-harvest through slaughter.

Salmonella Compliance Guidelines for Small and Very Small Meat and Poultry Establishments that Produce Ready-to-Eat (RTE) Products (Sep 19, 2012; PDF Only)
This document is intended to assist small and very small meat and poultry establishments that manufacture ready-to-eat (RTE) meat and poultry products in understanding the regulatory requirements associated with safe production of these products with respect to Salmonella and other pathogens.

Compliance Guideline for Controlling Salmonella and Campylobacter in Poultry Third Edition May 2010 (May 10, 2010; PDF Only)
This compliance guideline describes concerns and validated controls for each step in the poultry slaughter process.

Chemical Antimicrobials (Jun 29, 2009; PDF Only)
Peer reviewed articles of antimicrobials approved by the FDA and FSIS as safe and suitable ingredients.


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Sanitation Performance Standards

Less than Daily Sanitation Procedures Compliance Guideline (Oct 19, 2009; PDF Only)
This guidance document was developed to help establishments that are considering or planning to implement less than daily (LTD) sanitation procedures.

Sanitation Performance Standards Compliance Guide(Oct 13, 1999)
FSIS presents or references methods already proven to be effective in maintaining sanitary conditions in meat and poultry establishments. [Return to Top]
 

Additional Resources

PolicyPoints 
FSIS provides PowerPoint presentations to promote a uniform understanding of Agency notices, directives and other issuances.

See Also:

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Last Modified Dec 22, 2014