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AMI Recommends Strategies for Risk Based Sampling and Beef Carcass Baseline Studies

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

(American Meat Institute)

AMI supported risk-based sampling in comments submitted to USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) on Docket No. FSIS 2012-0020: Risk-Based Sampling of Beef Manufacturing Trimmings for Escherichia coli (E. coli) O157:H7 and Plans for Beef Baseline.  

The Institute also recommended that in its sampling, FSIS consider the market class of animal, size of the establishment and the historical rate of E. coli O157:H7 detected at plants via agency testing. The comments also noted that the May 2012 USDA Office of Inspector General Report found that “industry was taking appropriate steps to help ensure that U.S. beef is safe from E. coli contamination.”

In addition, AMI urged FSIS to consider industry input when developing an agency survey that will assess changes made by the industry in the last five years that impact food safety.

Finally, AMI recommended an approach for conducting the beef carcass baseline survey. “Baselines provide a means to gain valuable information about the current products being evaluated. To provide information only on the slaughter process, instead of the complete production of beef trimmings that are used in the production of ground beef (including veal), seems to be too narrow of a focus and limits the knowledge that could be gained during this study,” AMI said.

The comments also recommended a “shakedown process” prior to the baseline process to assess the logistics of sampling so that the process does not lead to a manufacturing bottleneck.

The full comments are available here: http://www.meatinstitute.org/ht/a/GetDocumentAction/i/83177 




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