Guidance for Shell Egg Cleaners and Sanitizers
|Compounds used to wash and destain shell eggs are potential food additives. Therefore, they are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Unfortunately, FDA does not have any published regulations dealing with shell egg cleaning and destaining compounds.
Since the end of the U.S. Department of Agriculture prior approval program for nonfood compounds, FDA has provided FSIS with some general guidelines we can give to companies inquiring about chemicals acceptable for use in formulating products for cleaning and destaining shell eggs.
FDA regulates antimicrobial agents that are used on raw agricultural commodities, such as shell eggs, wherever food is prepared, packaged, or held for commercial purposes. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates antimicrobial agents that are applied in the field, at treatment facilities where raw commodities are the only food treated and the treatment does not change the status of the food as a raw agricultural commodity, and during transportation between the field and such facility. Sanitizers formulated in compliance with 21 CFR, Section 178.1010 are acceptable for use in sanitizing shell eggs provided they are registered with EPA for this use. New sanitizers (i.e., not formulated in compliance with 21 CFR, Section 178.1010) intended for use on shell eggs that will be used for commercial purposes must be submitted to the FDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition for clearance. Questions regarding sanitizers applied to shell eggs in the field or at a treatment facility where raw commodities are the only food treated should be addressed to the Antimicrobial Division, Office of Pesticide Programs, EPA.
For further information, contact (202) 205-0279 or (202) 205-0623.