FSIS to step up residue testing in eggs, poultry and meat

The federal government is increasing its emphasis on residue testing in some food products, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced yesterday.

Later this summer, the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) plans to launch “new, modern, high efficiency” methods for detecting legal and illegal residues in meat, poultry and egg products, according to a statement.

The expanded methods are part of the already existing National Residue Program, which tests for legal and illegal chemical compounds such as pesticides, hormones, veterinary drugs and environmental contaminants. The new methods will allow FSIS to test for multiple residues, such as antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs and growth promoters, in each sample, rather than one screen for each sample. With the new system, FSIS can screen each sample for up to 55 pesticides, nine antibiotics, multiple metals and more than 50 other chemicals, rather than only checking each sample for one type of residue, according to the statement.

The number of samples per slaughter class also is making a dramatic jump from 300 to 800.

The new measures are slated to bepublished in the Federal Register on July 6 and are expected to take effect 30 days after the notice is published.

To read the full statement, click here.

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