Constituent Update - December 31, 2020
FSIS Announces the Availability of the Fiscal Year 2021 Annual Sampling Plan
A key FSIS inspection verification activity is the sampling of product for microbiological contaminants or chemical residues. FSIS released the Report on the Food Safety and Inspection Service Microbiological and Residue Sampling Programs in December 2011, which identified all of FSIS’ sampling programs and discussed the statistical and policy basis for the programs. FSIS has released a new sampling plan for each subsequent fiscal year. These sampling plans continued FSIS’ efforts to comprehensively identify the Agency’s microbiological and chemical residue sampling activities and consider them in light of data-driven strategic planning efforts. The Fiscal Year 2021 Annual Sampling Plan is available at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/wcm/connect/c6684d6c-8a21-492a-9835-ab204304bb88/fsis-annual-sampling-plan-fy2021.pdf?MOD=AJPERES.
National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection Meeting Materials Now Available
On September 24-25, 2020, FSIS held a virtual public meeting with the National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection (NACMPI). The members of NACMPI prepared recommendations concerning the production of artisanal, shelf-stable, ready-to-eat (RTE) fermented, salt-cured, or dried products that rely on multiple hurdles for lethality and advice on whether FSIS should continue not to sample or test boxed beef primal and sub-primal products for STEC, if they are intended for intact cuts. The recommendations and transcripts of the meeting are available at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/regulations/advisory-committees/nacmpi-reports.
Tips for Faster Label Approval Process
Labels are currently taking about 5-7 business days to evaluate.
TIP: Labels on inspected and passed amenable meat and poultry products bear the round USDA meat or poultry inspection legend (9 CFR 312.2(b)(2) or 381.96) even if the product formula includes ingredients derived from exotic species listed in 9 CFR 352.1. Additionally, the presence of exotic species in an amenable meat or poultry product does not require that the establishment submit the label to FSIS for approval.
When an exotic species such as deer or buffalo is used as an ingredient in an amenable meat or poultry product (e.g., formulated with 2% or more cooked meat or poultry, formulated with more than 3% raw meat or poultry), the amenable product will bear the round USDA meat or poultry inspection legend. Amenable meat and poultry product labels do not bear the triangular USDA Voluntary inspection legend (9 CFR 352.7(b)(1)) even if the product is formulated with a greater amount of exotic species compared to the amount of meat or poultry. For example, a “Bison and Beef Sausage” formulated with 75lbs of raw bison, 20lbs of raw beef, and 5lbs of spices would bear the USDA meat inspection legend (9 CFR 312.2(b)(2)) even though bison is present in the product formula in a greater proportion than beef.
FSIS has observed establishments submitting labels to FSIS for sketch approval for amenable meat products that include an exotic species as an ingredient when the label does not bear special statements or claims or meet any of the other criteria requiring label approval in 9 CFR 412.1. An amenable meat or poultry product that is formulated with exotic species as an ingredient may be generically approved if the label meets the requirements in 9 CFR 412.2. Thus, the use of an exotic species ingredient in an amenable meat or poultry product does not require FSIS sketch approval. In comparison, submission for FSIS sketch approval is required for exotic species labels for products produced under USDA Voluntary inspection that bear the triangular USDA Voluntary inspection legend. For example, a “Bison Sausage” that is formulated with 95lbs pounds of raw bison and 5lbs of spices produced under USDA Voluntary inspection would bear the triangular USDA Voluntary inspection legend and the label would need to be submitted for label approval.
For assistance in determining which labels to submit to FSIS for approval, including what types of statements are considered “special statements or claims,” please see the FSIS Compliance Guideline for Label Approval.
FSIS will continue to provide updates regarding label turnaround time, as well as suggestions to assist industry to streamline label submissions in its Constituent Update.
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 updates were recently issued:
FSIS Directive 9900.3 Revision 2 - Prestamping Imported Product
FSIS Directive 9900.8 Revision 2 - Meat, Poultry, and Egg Products Refused Entry Into the United States
FSIS Directive 10230.3 - FSIS Verification Testing of Domestic Egg Products
Docket No. FSIS-2020-0079 - Regulation of the Movement of Animals Modified or Developed by Genetic Engineering
FSIS Notice 70-20 - Egg Products Inspection Regulatory Changes
FSIS Notice 71-20 - Import Reinspection Activities Impacted by Publication of the Amended Egg Products Inspection Regulations
FSIS Notice 72-20 - Requesting Sign Language Interpreter Services
Export Requirements Update
The Library of Export Requirements has been updated for products for the following countries:
- United Kingdom
Complete information can be found at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/international-affairs/exporting-products.