[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 47 (Monday, March 11, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 8662-8663]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-04350]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Food Safety and Inspection Service

[Docket No. FSIS-2018-0034]


Availability of FSIS Guideline for Industry Response to Customer 
Complaints

AGENCY: Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of availability and request for comment.

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SUMMARY: The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing 
the availability of and requesting comments on a guideline to assist 
the meat and poultry industry develop written programs for responding 
to consumer complaints about adulterated or misbranded meat and poultry 
products. FSIS developed this guideline in response to an increase in 
the number of recalls of meat and poultry products contaminated with 
foreign materials.

DATES: Submit comments on or before May 10, 2019.

ADDRESSES: A downloadable version of the guideline is available to view 
and print at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/regulatory-compliance/compliance-guides-index once copies of the 
guideline have been published.
    FSIS invites interested persons to submit comments on this 
guideline. Comments may be submitted by one of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: This website provides the 
ability to type short comments directly into the comment field on this 
web page or attach a file for lengthier comments. Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions at that site for 
submitting comments.
     Mail, including CD-ROMs, etc.: Send to Docket Clerk, U.S. 
Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, 1400 
Independence Avenue SW, Mailstop 3758, Room 6065, Washington, DC 20250-
3700.
     Hand- or courier-delivered submittals: Deliver to 1400 
Independence Avenue SW, Room 6065, Washington, DC 20250-3700.
    Instructions: All items submitted by mail or electronic mail must 
include the Agency name and docket number FSIS-2018-0034. Comments 
received in response to this docket will be made available for public 
inspection and posted without change, including any personal 
information, to http://www.regulations.gov.
    Docket: For access to background documents or comments received, 
call (202)720-5627 to schedule a time to visit the FSIS Docket Room at 
1400 Independence Avenue SW, Room 6065, Washington, DC 20250-3700.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Roberta Wagner, Assistant 
Administrator, Office of Policy and Program Development; Telephone: 
(202) 205-0495.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) administers a 
regulatory program under the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 
U.S.C. 601 et seq.), the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 
U.S.C. 451 et seq.), and the Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA) (21 
U.S.C. 1031 et seq.) to protect the health and welfare of consumers. 
The Agency is responsible for ensuring that meat, poultry, and egg 
products are safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged.
    FSIS is announcing the availability of a guideline to assist all 
FSIS-regulated establishments that slaughter, or further process 
inspected meat and poultry products to develop and implement

[[Page 8663]]

procedures for responding to customer complaints of adulterated and 
misbranded meat and poultry products. FSIS developed this document in 
response to an increase in the number of recalls of meat and poultry 
products contaminated with foreign materials. In many cases, the 
recalling establishments had received multiple customer complaints 
before these recalls.
    While FSIS specifically developed this document to address foreign 
material customer complaints, establishments can apply the information 
to other customer complaints of adulterated or misbranded products in 
commerce. FSIS encourages establishments that may receive customer 
complaints for adulterated or misbranded meat and poultry products to 
follow this guideline. This document does not present or describe any 
new regulatory requirements. This guideline represents current FSIS 
thinking, and FSIS will update it as necessary to reflect comments 
received and any additional information that becomes available.

Additional Public Notification

    Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy 
development is important. Consequently, FSIS will announce this Federal 
Register publication on-line through the FSIS web page located at: 
http://www.fsis.usda.gov/federal-register.
    FSIS also will make copies of this publication available through 
the FSIS Constituent Update, which is used to provide information 
regarding FSIS policies, procedures, regulations, Federal Register 
notices, FSIS public meetings, and other types of information that 
could affect or would be of interest to our constituents and 
stakeholders. The Constituent Update is available on the FSIS web page. 
Through the web page, FSIS provides information to a much broader, more 
diverse audience. In addition, FSIS offers an email subscription 
service which provides automatic and customized access to selected food 
safety news and information. This service is available at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/subscribe. Options range from recalls to export 
information, regulations, directives, and notices. Customers can add or 
delete subscriptions themselves and have the option to password protect 
their accounts.

USDA Non-Discrimination Statement

    No agency, officer, or employee of the USDA shall, on the grounds 
of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual 
orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, 
income derived from a public assistance program, or political beliefs, 
exclude from participation in, deny the benefits of, or subject to 
discrimination any person in the United States under any program or 
activity conducted by the USDA.

How To File a Complaint of Discrimination

    To file a complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program 
Discrimination Complaint Form, which may be accessed online at http://www.ocio.usda.gov/sites/default/files/docs/2012/Complain_combined_6_8_12.pdf, or write a letter signed by you or your 
authorized representative.
    Send your completed complaint form or letter to USDA by mail, fax, 
or email:
    Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of 
Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410.
    Fax: (202) 690-7442.
    Email: program.intake@usda.gov.
    Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for 
communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.), should contact 
USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

    Done in Washington, DC.
Carmen M. Rottenberg,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2019-04350 Filed 3-8-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3410-DM-P