Constituent Update - June 23, 2023
FSIS Releases Study on Salmonella in Breaded Stuffed Chicken Products
FSIS conducted a study with the Food Emergency Response Network (FERN) laboratories to gather data on not-ready-to-eat (NRTE) breaded stuffed chicken products purchased at retail stores. Specifically, FSIS was interested in gaining information on the positive rate of Salmonella in these products and any differences in laboratory methods used.
Through FERN, 11 geographically dispersed state labs participated in the study. From July 1, 2022, to September 30, 2022, the labs purchased locally available NRTE breaded stuffed chicken products at retail stores and tested them for the presence of Salmonella and indicator organisms. In total, 58 of the 487 samples tested were positive for the presence of Salmonella. There was a significant difference in positive rates depending on the size of the sample tested; larger samples identified more positives.
For further information, the Survey of Not Ready-to-Eat Breaded and Stuffed Chicken Products for Salmonella can be found on the FSIS website.
Also, as announced in the May 12, 2023 Constituent Update, FSIS extended the comment period on the proposed determination titled Salmonella in Not-Ready-To-Eat Breaded Stuffed Chicken Products. The proposed determination is open for comments until July 27, 2023. FSIS extended the comment period in response to requests from industry associations for additional time to determine and formulate comments on the impact of the proposal.
FSIS Releases Updated Guidance for Controlling Lm in Retail Delis
FSIS has updated its guidance for retail firms to decrease the potential for Listeria monocytogenes (Lm) growth and cross-contamination. The Best Practices Guidance for Controlling Listeria monocytogenes in Retail Delicatessens discusses steps that retailers can take to prevent certain ready-to-eat (RTE) foods that are prepared or sliced in retail delicatessens and consumed in the home, such as deli meats and salads, from becoming contaminated with Lm and thus a source of listeriosis. FSIS encourages retailers to review the guidance and evaluate the effectiveness of their retail practices and intervention strategies in reducing the risk of listeriosis to consumers from RTE meat and poultry deli products.
FSIS has revised the guidance in response to FSIS focus group findings and recommendations from the National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection. FSIS has also made changes to incorporate more recent scientific knowledge, update references to the FDA Food Code, and improve consistency, clarity, and overall content. For more information, please view the Federal Register notice.
FSIS Encourages Industry to Prepare for CY 2024 Mexico PHIS Onboarding
FSIS is planning to onboard Mexico in the Public Health Information System (PHIS) export component in calendar year (CY) 2024, at a date to be determined. To prepare for Mexico’s implementation in PHIS, FSIS is strongly encouraging industry to ensure that all establishment information in Mexico’s approved establishment list, as documented in the export library, is identical to establishment information in PHIS and establishments’ grants of inspection.
In particular, exporting establishments should compare their establishment number, name, and address listed in the Mexico approved establishment list with the corresponding values in the map dashboard or downloadable data files on the Meat, Poultry and Egg Product Inspection Directory page and request updates if needed. To correct entries in the MPI directory page, the establishment must request updates of the inaccurate information, in the PHIS establishment profile through their FSIS district office. To correct entries in the Mexico approved establishment list, the establishment must submit a new 9080-3 application through PHIS.
Industry should submit updated establishment information by October 1, 2023. If industry does not take this step, establishments risk held or rejected shipments in CY 2024 when all certificates for Mexico will be digitally signed and generated using PHIS. As such, industry is to submit any 9080-3 application updates in PHIS as soon as possible to align establishment information included on the Mexico approved establishment list with corresponding establishment information in PHIS. Please see instructions for 9080-3 applications in the “Plants Eligible to Export” section of the FSIS export library for Mexico.
For establishments that do not currently have access to or use PHIS, they are to send a fully completed paper copy of FSIS Form 9080-3 to the FSIS Proxy, using one of the three options listed below (the FSIS Proxy will enter the application information into PHIS on the applicant’s behalf):
- Email: FSCExport.Recon@usda.gov
- Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, FMD, Financial Services Center, P.O. Box 9205, Des Moines, IA 50306-9948.
- Fax: 1-844-378-1048
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 June 23: Notice of Request To Renew an Approved Information Collection: Modernization of Poultry Slaughter Inspection
- Until July 5: Availability of FSIS Ready-To-Eat Fermented, Salt-Cured, and Dried Products Guideline
- Until July 11: Notice of Request for a New Information Collection: Consumer Labeling Research: Focus Groups
- Until July 27: Salmonella in Not-Ready-To-Eat Breaded Stuffed Chicken Products
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 26-23 - Availability of FSIS Best Practices Guidance for Controlling Listeria Monocytogenes (Lm) in Retail Delicatessens
FSIS Directive 5730.1 - Responsibilities in Dual Jurisdiction Establishments - Revision 1
FSIS Directive 7120.1- Safe and Suitable Ingredients Used in the Production of Meat, Poultry, and Egg Products - Revision 58
FSIS Directive 7800.1 - FSIS Responsibilities in Establishments Producing Cell-Cultured Meat and Poultry Food Products
Export Requirements Update
The Library of Export Requirements has been updated for products for the following:
- El Salvador
- North Macedonia
- South Africa
- French Polynesia (Tahiti)
- Costa Rica
Complete information can be found at the FSIS Import & Export Library.