Constituent Update - February 3, 2023
Don’t Let Delivery and Takeout Foods Fumble Your Super Bowl
Millions of Americans will come together to watch Super Bowl LVII next weekend, while enjoying foods both prepared at home or provided by delivery and takeout. To prevent foodborne illness, food should not be left out for over two hours without proper heating or cooling and should be placed out in small amounts and replenished as needed to keep your family and friends safe.
The Danger Zone is the range of temperatures between 40 F and 140 F where bacteria can reach unsafe levels. Keep cold foods cold under 40 F by nesting serving dishes of food in bowls of ice and keep hot foods hot above 140 F by placing them in a preheated oven, chafing dish, preheated warming trays or slow cooker. Also consider putting out smaller portions and replenishing them frequently as opposed to putting out all foods at once.
For more Super Bowl Sunday food safety tips, check out our full press release and follow FSIS on Twitter in English or Spanish.
Please call the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline with any questions at 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854), email MPHotline@usda.gov, or chat with a food safety expert live at ask.usda.gov from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday.
USDA Seeks Nominations for Membership on Food Safety Advisory Committee
USDA is soliciting nominations for membership to the National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF). There are 15 vacancies on the advisory committee.
USDA is seeking NACMCF nominees with scientific expertise in the fields of microbiology, risk assessment, epidemiology, public health, food science, and other relevant disciplines, to obtain the scientific perspective, expertise, experience, and point-of-view of all stakeholders. USDA is seeking nominations for NACMCF from persons in academia, industry, and state governments, as well as all other interested persons with the required expertise. Members can serve on only one USDA advisory committee at a time.
The committee provides valuable advice to USDA and other government agencies on a number of issues. Recently, the committee provided the best scientific information available on enhancing Salmonella control in poultry. The committee is currently addressing Cronobacter spp. in powdered infant formula for the Food and Drug Administration and anticipates an FSIS charge related to the benefits of genomic characterization of pathogens.
All nomination packages must be received by March 15, 2023.
Established in 1988, NACMCF provides scientific advice and recommendations to the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of Health and Human Services on public health issues relative to the safety and wholesomeness of the U.S. food supply, including development of microbiological criteria and review and evaluation of epidemiological and risk assessment data and methodologies for assessing microbiological hazards in foods. The committee also provides scientific advice and recommendations to the U.S. Departments of Commerce and Defense.
Those who have questions about nominations can contact John Jarosh, Designated Federal Officer, by telephone at 510-671-4397, by email to NACMCF@usda.gov or by mail to: John Jarosh, USDA, FSIS, Office of Public Health Science, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Room 1131, Washington, DC 20250.
View the Federal Register notice here.
FSIS to Expand Salmonella Enumeration and Aerobic Count Indicator Testing to Other Poultry Products
Between August 2022 and November 2022, FSIS used Salmonella Enumeration and Aerobic Count Indicator analyses during a chicken carcass exploratory two-point sampling project that compared carcasses at pre- and post-intervention. Starting January 30, 2023, these two analyses were added to chicken parts rinsates. They will be added to comminuted chicken on February 27, 2023, and to comminuted turkey no later than April 3, 2023.
Data generated from these analyses will be used to further characterize sampling results from chicken parts and comminuted products and will be available to industry via the on-demand establishment sampling summary report available in FSIS’s Public Health Information System (PHIS). Details on the Salmonella Enumeration method and Aerobic Count Indicator testing can be found in the FSIS Microbiology Laboratory Guidebook, chapters 4.13 and 3.02 respectively.
View the FSIS Notice here.
Tips for Industry on Enrolling in PHIS
The Public Health Information System (PHIS) is a dynamic, comprehensive data analytic system, used to collect, consolidate, and analyze data to improve public health. It has components that are designed for industry representatives who produce meat, poultry, and egg products under inspection by FSIS. It is a web-based application that improves the way FSIS detects and responds to foodborne hazards.
An establishment employee can use a PHIS account to submit export applications, appeal noncompliance records (NRs), report adulterated product, view reports pertaining to their establishment, review slaughter data, and more. The PHIS Industry User Guide contains more details about how to enroll in PHIS as well as useful information for industry about using the system. Additionally, FSIS has produced industry tutorials for assistance.
Before beginning, interested establishment employees should watch the tutorial on creating an eAuth account and follow the instructions to create a level 2 eAuth account. If online setup does not work, the employee may need to visit a Local Registration Authority. They should call ahead to make an appointment. NOTE: eAuth accounts are assigned to specific individuals based on identity verification. eAuth login credentials are not to be shared or used by another individual.
Establishment management should ask the FSIS inspector at the facility to add the first establishment administrator to the contacts list of the PHIS establishment profile as described in FSIS Directive 13000.6. The FSIS inspector must enter the exact name and email used for the employee’s eAuth account.
Next, the establishment administrator logs in to phis.fsis.usda.gov/enrollment with their eAuth username and password. After logging in the first time, the establishment administrator should select “Open FSIS Dashboard.” The establishment administrator is then responsible for managing enrollment requests and assigning roles to other users for the establishment. FSIS recommends having more than one establishment administrator per establishment.
Subsequent PHIS users for that establishment would go to the same PHIS enrollment site to enter eAuth username and password, select “Log In with Password” and on the next page select “Submit Enrollment Request.” This entails selecting the appropriate role, either establishment administrator, plant management, or export applicant. From there, the person who is the establishment administrator would approve or deny the request for enrollment and assign the requested roles. An employee may have more than one role in PHIS, depending on their job functions.
NOTE: PHIS automatically disables industry user accounts after 90 days of inactivity.
If you require assistance or have any questions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Available for Public Comment
FSIS seeks public comments on proposed rules and notices, which are viewable on the FSIS Federal Register & Rulemaking webpage. FSIS is currently seeking comments on the following:
- Until February 17: Prior Label Approval System: Expansion of Generic Label Approval
FSIS notices and directives on public health and regulatory issues are available on the FSIS Policy webpage. The following policy update was recently issued:
FSIS Notice 07-23 - FSIS Sampling for Labeling Claims Verification
FSIS Notice 08-23 - New Sampling Instructions And Testing for Chicken Parts and NRTE Comminuted Poultry
Export Requirements Update
The Library of Export Requirements has been updated for products for the following:
- French Polynesia (Tahiti)
- New Caledonia
- Western Samoa (Samoa)
- Solomon Islands
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- United Arab Emirates
- South Africa
- North Macedonia
- Congo, Republic of (Brazzaville)
- European Union
Complete information can be found at the FSIS Import & Export Library.