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FSIS Launches Nationwide Study on Beef and Veal Carcass Baseline

Monday, October 6, 2014

(American Meat Institute)

USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has launched the Nationwide Beef and Veal Carcass Baseline Survey (B-VCBS) to collect data for future risk assessments and to develop regulatory policy options.

The 12-month survey, which began on August 1, 2014, is being conducted in establishments that process beef and veal carcasses. FSIS field employees are collecting approximately 3,000 samples from steer, heifer, cow, bull, dairy cow and veal carcasses at two points along the slaughter line-immediately after hide removal (pre-evisceration) and at pre-chill (after all anti-microbial interventions). FSIS is collecting data on select foodborne bacterial pathogens, including presence and levels of Salmonella, E. coli O157:H7 and non-O157 Shiga-toxin producing E. coli (STEC), as well as levels of indicator bacteria, including total bacteria (aerobic plate count or APC), generic E. coli, coliforms and Enterobacteriaceae.

During a four-month training phase, FSIS prepared personnel for the survey, refined the list of beef and veal carcass slaughter plants included in the study, and identified modifications to the survey and analytical methods. Details on the sampling design can be found here . For more information about the survey, and for an overview of preliminary findings, click here .

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