Constituent Update - August 21, 2020
Reminder: FSIS to Host Western Laboratory Open House
FSIS plans to host a virtual open house at the Western Laboratory in Albany, California on August 24, 2020, from 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. PT. The open house will offer an inside look at the sample analysis process from beginning to end. The event will provide an overview of what happens to a sample from the time it is delivered to an FSIS lab to the time the sample result is reported. Attendees will receive an introductory presentation about the lab system followed by a virtual visit to sample receiving and other stations within the lab to learn how samples are processed and analyzed for microbial pathogens and chemical residues. Unique analyses to the Western Laboratory include pesticides and canned foods.
Participants must pre-register. Please go to https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/newsroom/meetings/meetings-archive/upcoming-meetings/meeting-registration-ophs-open-house-western to register. A confirmation email with additional logistics will be provided to attendees prior to the open house session.
FSIS Posts Individual Category Status and Aggregate Results for Poultry Carcasses, Chicken Parts, and Comminuted Poultry Tested for Salmonella
On August 20, 2020, FSIS updated the individual establishment Salmonella performance standard category information for raw poultry carcasses, raw chicken parts and comminuted poultry products at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/data-collection-and-reports/microbiology/salmonella-verification-testing-program/establishment-categories.
Additionally, FSIS will post the aggregate sampling results showing the number of establishments in categories 1, 2, or 3 for establishments producing young chicken or turkey carcasses, raw chicken parts or not ready-to-eat (NRTE) comminuted poultry products at: https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/data-collection-and-reports/microbiology/salmonella-verification-testing-program/aggregate-data.
USDA Appoints New Members to Food Safety Advisory Committees
On Aug. 19, 2020, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the appointment of 10 new members to the National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection (NACMPI) and an additional new member to the National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF).
The new NACMPI members appointed to serve two-year terms are:
- Dr. Jimmy L. Avery, Mississippi State University
- Mr. William H. Battle, Pride of the Pond and Battle Fish North
- Ms. Tina Conklin, Michigan State University
- Dr. Patricia Ann Curtis, North Carolina State University
- Dr. Jennifer A. Eberly, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry
- Mrs. Casey Lynn Gallimore, North American Meat Institute
- Dr. Joseph Jay Harris, Southwest Meat Association
- Dr. Curtis Lynn Knipe, Ohio State University
- Dr. Byron Williams, Mississippi State University
- Ms. Sherri L. Williams, JBS USA, LLC
See the full list of NACMPI members.
The newly appointed NACMCF member to serve a two-year term is:
- Ms. Shannara Lynn, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
See the full list of NACMCF members.
NACMPI was established in 1971 by FSIS. NACMPI is an advisory committee that advises on food safety concerns and other matters affecting inspection program activities, including food safety policies that will contribute to USDA’s regulatory policy development. More information on NACMPI is available on the FSIS website.
NACMCF was established in 1988 by FSIS, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), the Department of Commerce (National Marine Fisheries Service), and the U.S. Department of Defense. NACMCF is an advisory committee that provides impartial scientific advice and peer reviews to food safety agencies on public health issues related to the safety and wholesomeness of domestic, imported and exported foods. More information on NACMCF is available on the FSIS website.
FSIS Releases New Microbiology Laboratory Guidebook Chapter
FSIS has released a new chapter of the Microbiology Laboratory Guidebook (MLG). Chapter 42, titled “Whole Genome Sequencing of Bacterial Isolates,” details the protocol FSIS microbiologists have been following internally since 2016 to perform whole genome sequencing (WGS) at agency food testing laboratories.
The protocol was developed through collaboration with public health partners and has been fully implemented across the FSIS field service laboratory system. The new user-friendly format includes informational diagrams and graphics that clarify the procedure. Moving forward, FSIS will use this new streamlined format to enhance the readability and information found in both the MLG and Chemistry Laboratory Guidebook chapters as they are developed and revised. MLG 42 will become effective on September 14, 2020.
Please direct questions regarding specific procedures listed in the Chapter to AskFSIS. The new MLG chapter can be found at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/science/laboratories-and-procedures/guidebooks-and-methods/microbiology-laboratory-guidebook/microbiology-laboratory-guidebook .
FSIS Announces Revision of Directive on Using Results from Non-FSIS Labs
FSIS has revised Directive 10,000.1, Policy on Use of Results from non-FSIS Laboratories. The directive outlines the decision-making processes used by FSIS to assess results from non-FSIS laboratories during foodborne illness outbreak investigations and provides clear direction regarding the documentation and information FSIS uses to complete the review process. A key change in the directive is a reduction in the documentation required from third-party accredited non-FSIS laboratories or laboratories audited by FSIS as part of the State Meat and Poultry Inspection program annual review. Assessment of the results provided by non-FSIS laboratories will be expedited because the number of documents needed for the review will be reduced.
During a foodborne outbreak investigation, public health departments collect food samples and send them to state laboratories to analyze for the presence of pathogens that may be causing the outbreak. FSIS evaluates the information that these non-FSIS labs provide on FSIS-regulated products to determine if the procedures and laboratory practices utilized are acceptable. If the methods used by the non-FSIS labs are determined to be suitable, the results are reported as acceptable and FSIS may use the results to take the appropriate regulatory action.
The revised directive is available at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/wcm/connect/125da540-2daa-4e3a-86ab-c6cc4b127f61/10000.1.pdf?MOD=AJPERES.
FSIS notices and directives on public health and regulatory issues are available at: https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/regulations. The following policy update was recently issued:
Docket No. FSIS-2020-0027 - National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection Public Meeting
Export Requirements Update
The Library of Export Requirements has been updated for the following countries:
- China, People’s Republic of
- Korea, Republic of
Complete information can be found at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/international-affairs/exporting-products