New Salmonella standards coming for beef and poultry

The beef and poultry industry will soon see new performance standards for inspection procedures that aim to prevent illnesses relating to Salmonella, according to a recent article published in Food Safety News.

Planned to take effect within a year, these inspection procedures are being developed by the USDA’s Food Safety and inspection Service (FSIS) and are the first step in the agency’s Salmonella action plan, as well as the first new inspection procedures to be developed since 1957.

As reported by Meatingplace, Rachel Edelstein, acting assistant administrator of the FSIS Office of Policy and Program Development, said that the new procedure will “prevent illnesses each year because inspectors will spend more time on verification activities that address food safety.”

Edelstein also said that FSIS has been subjecting beef samples collected for STEC testing to additional analysis for Salmonella within in the last few months and those results will be used to “establish new pathogen performance standards for ground beef and to measure Salmonella in ground beef and trim.”

In addition, FSIS is also developing new performance standards for Salmonella and Campylobacter for poultry products. Those changes are reported to be expected before the end of 2014, which could also result in performance standards being introduced for pork products, including pork trim and ground pork.

Edelstein noted that this is important because there is evidence that pork contributes to Salmonella illnesses and that improvements in sanitary dressing issues in hog slaughter could help alleviate issues related to Salmonella.

Before FSIS takes final action, a comment period will take place for both beef and poultry standards.

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