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FSIS Issues Notice on Changes in Sampling Frequency for E. coli O157:H7 Testing of Beef Manufacturing Trimmings

Friday, April 13, 2012

(American Meat Institute)

The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has issued Notice 27:12: Changes in Sampling Frequency for E. Coli O157:H7 Testing of Beef Manufacturing Trimmings (MT60), which provides information and instruction to inspection program personnel (IPP) about the changes FSIS is initiating in its Beef Manufacturing Trimmings testing program for Escherichia coli (E. coli) O157:H7.

As part of the changes, FSIS is replacing the project code MT50 with a new project code MT60. The MT60 sampling program will begin May 1, 2012. FSIS will update all relevant Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) policy issuances over time to reflect the new project code.

In the interim, IPP are to follow instructions related to MT50 sampling when conducting MT60 sampling. As a result of these changes, in some establishments FSIS is increasing the frequency with which IPP will collect samples. In addition, to ensure that IPP collect a sample each time one is requested, FSIS is increasing the sample collection range.

Similar to the MT43 program, the MT60 sampling program will have a maximum number of samples that can be requested per month. Under the MT60 program, IPP assigned to establishments with higher production volumes will receive more sample requests than IPP assigned to establishments with lower production volumes. Also, under the MT60 program, IPP will receive more sample requests during the high prevalence season. Additionally, FSIS expects to sample at least once per year at each establishment. Finally, in an effort to increase the overall number of samples collected, FSIS may send out additional sample requests.

To view this notice, go to http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations_&_policies/FSIS_Notices_Index/index.asp.

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