9 CFR 310.25 - Contamination with microorganisms; process control verification criteria and testing; pathogen reduction standards.

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§ 310.25 Contamination with microorganisms; process control verification criteria and testing; pathogen reduction standards.

(a) Criteria for verifying process control; E. coli testing. (1) Each official establishment that slaughters livestock must test for Escherichia coli Biotype 1 (E.coli) Establishments that slaughter more than one type of livestock or both livestock and poultry, shall test the type of livestock or poultry slaughtered in the greatest number. The establishment shall:

(i) Collect samples in accordance with the sampling techniques, methodology, and frequency requirements in paragraph (a)(2) of this section;

(ii) Obtain analytic results in accordance with paragraph (a)(3) of this section; and

(iii) Maintain records of such analytic results in accordance with paragraph (a)(4) of this section.

(2) Sampling requirements.

(i)Written procedures. Each establishment shall prepare written specimen collection procedures which shall identify employees designated to collect samples, and shall address location(s) of sampling, how sampling randomness is achieved, and handling of the sample to ensure sample integrity. The written procedure shall be made available to FSIS upon request.

(ii)Sample collection. The establishment must collect samples from all chilled livestock carcasses, except those boned before chilling (hot-boned), which must be sampled after the final wash. Samples must be collected in the following manner;

(A) For cattle, establishments must sponge or excise tissue from the flank, brisket and rump, except for hide-on calves, in which case establishments must take samples by sponging from inside the flank, inside the brisket, and inside the rump.

(B) For sheep, goat, horse, mule, or other equine carcasses, establishments must sponge from the flank, brisket and rump, except for hide-on carcasses, in which case establishments must take samples by sponging from inside the flank, inside the brisket, and inside the rump.

(C) For swine carcasses, establishments must sponge or excise tissue from the ham, belly and jowl areas.

(iii)Sampling frequency. Slaughter establishments, except very low volume establishments as defined in paragraph (a)(2)(v) of this section, must take samples at a frequency proportional to the volume of production at the following rates:

(A) Cattle, sheep, goats, horses, mules, and other equines: 1 test per 300 carcasses, but, a minimum of one sample during each week of operation.

Swine: 1 test per 1,000 carcasses, but a minimum of one sample during each week of operation.

(iv)Sampling frequency alternatives. An establishment operating under a validated HACCP plan in accordance with § 417.2(b) of this chapter may substitute an alternative frequency for the frequency of sampling required under paragraph (a)(2)(iii) of this section if,

(A) The alternative is an integral part of the establishment's verification procedures for its HACCP plan and,

(B) FSIS does not determine, and notify the establishment in writing, that the alternative frequency is inadequate to verify the effectiveness of the establishment's processing controls.

(v)Sampling in very low volume establishments.

(A) Very low volume establishments annually slaughter no more than 6,000 cattle, 6,000 sheep, 6,000 goats, 6,000 horses, mules or other equines, 20,000 swine, or a combination of livestock not exceeding 6,000 cattle and 20,000 total of all livestock. Very low volume establishments that collect samples by sponging shall collect at least one sample per week, starting the first full week of operation after June 1 of each year, and continue sampling at a minimum of once each week the establishment operates until June 1 of the following year or until 13 samples have been collected, whichever comes first. Very low volume establishments collecting samples by excising tissue from carcasses shall collect one sample per week, starting the first full week of operation after June 1 of each year, and continue sampling at a minimum of once each week the establishment operates until one series of 13 tests meets the criteria set forth in paragraph (a)(5)(i) of this section.

(B) Upon the establishment's meeting requirements of paragraph (a)(2)(v)(A) of this section, weekly sampling and testing is optional, unless changes are made in establishment facilities, equipment, personnel or procedures that may affect the adequacy of existing process control measures, as determined by the establishment or FSIS. FSIS determinations that changes have been made requiring resumption of weekly testing shall be provided to the establishment in writing.

(3)Analysis of samples. Laboratories may use any quantitative method for analysis of E. coli that is approved as an AOAC Official Method of the AOAC International (formerly the Association of Official Analytical Chemists) 2 or approved and published by a scientific body and based on the results of a collaborative trial conducted in accordance with an internationally recognized protocol on collaborative trials and compared against the three tube Most Probable Number (MPN) method and agreeing with the 95 percent upper and lower confidence limit of the appropriate MPN index.

2 A copy of the current edition/revision of the “Official Methods of AOAC International,” 16th edition, 3rd revision, 1997, is on file with the Director, Office of the Federal Register, and may be purchased from the Association of Official Analytical Chemists International, Inc., 481 North Frederick Ave., Suite 500, Gaithersburg, MD 20877-2417.

(4)Recording of test results. The establishment shall maintain accurate records of all test results, in terms of CFU/cm 2 of surface area sponged or excised. Results shall be recorded onto a process control chart or table showing at least the most recent 13 test results, by type of livestock slaughtered. Records shall be retained at the establishment for a period of 12 months and shall be made available to FSIS upon request.

(5)Criteria for evaluation of test results.

(i) An establishment excising samples from carcasses is operating within the criteria when the most recent E. coli test result does not exceed the upper limit (M), and the number of samples, if any, testing positive at levels above (m) is three or fewer out of the most recent 13 samples (n) taken, as follows:

Table 1 - Evaluation of E. Coli Test Results

Type of livestock Lower limit of
marginal range
Upper limit of
marginal range
Number of sample
Maximum number permitted in marginal range
Cattle Negative a 100 CFU/cm 2 13 3
Swine 10 CFU/cm 2 10,000 CFU/cm 2 13 3

a Negative is defined by the sensitivity of the method used in the baseline study with a limit of sensitivity of at least 5 cfu/cm 2 carcass surface area.

(ii) Establishments sponging carcasses shall evaluate E. coli test results using statistical process control techniques.

(6)Failure to meet criteria. Test results that do not meet the criteria described in paragraph (a)(5) of this section are an indication that the establishment may not be maintaining process controls sufficient to prevent fecal contamination. FSIS shall take further action as appropriate to ensure that all applicable provisions of the law are being met.

(7)Failure to test and record. Inspection shall be suspended in accordance with rules of practice that will be adopted for such proceedings upon a finding by FSIS that one or more provisions of paragraphs (a) (1)-(4) of this section have not been complied with and written notice of same has been provided to the establishment.

(b) Pathogen reduction performance standard; Salmonella -

(1)Raw meat product performance standards for Salmonella. An establishment's raw meat products, when sampled and tested by FSIS for Salmonella, as set forth in this section, may not test positive for Salmonella at a rate exceeding the applicable national pathogen reduction performance standard, as provided in Table 2:

Table 2 - Salmonella Performance Standards

Class of product Performance Standard (percent positive for Salmonella) a Number of samples tested
Maximum number of positives to achieve Standard
Steers/heifers 1.0% 82 1
Cows/bulls 2.7% 58 2
Ground beef 7.5% 53 5
Hogs 8.7% 55 6
Fresh pork sausages b N.A. N.A. N.A.

a Performance Standards are FSIS's calculation of the national prevalence of Salmonella on the indicated raw product based on data developed by FSIS in its nationwide microbiological data collection programs and surveys. Copies of Reports on FSIS's Nationwide Microbiological Data Collection Programs and Nationwide Microbiological Surveys used in determining the prevalence of Salmonella on raw products are available in the FSIS Docket Room.

b Not available; values for fresh pork sausage will be added upon completion data collection programs for those products.

(2)Enforcement. FSIS will sample and test raw meat products in an individual establishment on an unannounced basis to determine prevalence of Salmonella in such products to determine compliance with the standard. The frequency and timing of such testing will be based on the establishment's previous test results and other information concerning the establishment's performance. In an establishment producing more than one class of product subject to the pathogen reduction standard, FSIS may sample any or all such classes of products. 3

3 A copy of FSIS's “Sample Collection Guidelines and Procedure for Isolation and Identification of Salmonella from Meat and Poultry Products” is available for inspection in the FSIS Docket Room.

(3)Noncompliance and establishment response. When FSIS determines that an establishment has not met the performance standard:

(i) The establishment shall take immediate action to meet the standard.

(ii) If the establishment fails to meet the standard on the next series of compliance tests for that product, the establishment shall reassess its HACCP plan for that product and take appropriate corrective actions.

(iii) Failure by the establishment to act in accordance with paragraph (b)(3)(ii) of this section, or failure to meet the standard on the third consecutive series of FSIS-conducted tests for that product, constitutes failure to maintain sanitary conditions and failure to maintain an adequate HACCP plan, in accordance with part 417 of this chapter, for that product, and will cause FSIS to suspend inspection services. Such suspension will remain in effect until the establishment submits to the FSIS Administrator or his/her designee satisfactory written assurances detailing the action taken to correct the HACCP system and, as appropriate, other measures taken by the establishment to reduce the prevalence of pathogens.

[ 61 FR 38864, July 25, 1996, as amended at 62 FR 26217, May 13, 1997; 63 FR 1735, Jan. 12, 1998; 64 FR 66553, Nov. 29, 1999]

This is a list of United States Code sections, Statutes at Large, Public Laws, and Presidential Documents, which provide rulemaking authority for this CFR Part.

This list is taken from the Parallel Table of Authorities and Rules provided by GPO [Government Printing Office].

It is not guaranteed to be accurate or up-to-date, though we do refresh the database weekly. More limitations on accuracy are described at the GPO site.

United States Code
U.S. Code: Title 21 - FOOD AND DRUGS

§ 601 - Definitions

§ 602 - Congressional statement of findings

§ 603 - Examination of animals prior to slaughter; use of humane methods

§ 604 - Post mortem examination of carcasses and marking or labeling; destruction of carcasses condemned; reinspection

§ 605 - Examination of carcasses brought into slaughtering or packing establishments, and of meat food products issued from and returned thereto; conditions for entry

§ 606 - Inspection and labeling of meat food products

§ 607 - Labeling, marking, and container requirements

§ 608 - Sanitary inspection and regulation of slaughtering and packing establishments; rejection of adulterated meat or meat food products

§ 609 - Examination of animals and food products thereof, slaughtered and prepared during nighttime

§ 610 - Prohibited acts

§ 611 - Devices, marks, labels, and certificates; simulations

§ 612 - Notification

§ 613 - Plans and reassessments

§ 614 - Repealed. Pub. L. 107–171, title X, § 10418(a)(19), May 13, 2002, 116 Stat. 508

§ 615 - Inspection of carcasses, meat of which is intended for export

§ 616 - Inspectors of carcasses, etc., meat of which is intended for export; certificates of condition

§ 617 - Clearance prohibited to vessel carrying meat for export without inspector’s certificate

§ 618 - Delivery of inspectors’ certificates, and of copies

§ 619 - Marking, labeling, or other identification to show kinds of animals from which derived; separate establishments for preparation and slaughtering activities

§ 620 - Imports

§ 621 - Inspectors to make examinations provided for; appointment; duties; regulations

§ 622 - Bribery of or gifts to inspectors or other officers and acceptance of gifts

§ 623 - Exemptions from inspection requirements

§ 624 - Storage and handling regulations; violations; exemption of establishments subject to non-Federal jurisdiction

§ 625 - Inapplicability of certain requirements to catfish

§ 641 - Prohibition of subchapter I inspection of articles not intended for use as human food; de­naturation or other identification prior to distribution in commerce; inedible articles

§ 642 - Recordkeeping requirements

§ 643 - Registration of business, name of person, and trade names

§ 644 - Regulation of transactions, transportation, or importation of 4–D animals to prevent use as human food

§ 645 - Federal provisions applicable to State or Territorial business transactions of a local nature and not subject to local authority

§ 661 - Federal and State cooperation

§ 671 - Inspection services; refusal or withdrawal; hearing; business unfitness based upon certain convictions; other provisions for withdrawal of services...with business; finality of Secretary’s actions; judicial review; record

§ 672 - Administrative detention; duration; pending judicial proceedings; notification of governmental authorities; release

§ 673 - Seizure and condemnation

§ 674 - Federal court jurisdiction of enforcement and injunction proceedings and other kinds of cases; limitations of section 607(e) of this title

§ 675 - Assaulting, resisting, or impeding certain persons; murder; protection of such persons

§ 676 - Violations

§ 677 - Other Federal laws applicable for administration and enforcement of chapter; location of inquiries; jurisdiction of Federal courts

§ 678 - Non-Federal jurisdiction of federally regulated matters; prohibition of additional or different requirements for establishments with inspection services and as...of adulterated or misbranded and imported articles; other matters

§ 679 - Application of Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act

§ 679a - Safe Meat and Poultry Inspection Panel

§ 679b - Pasteurization of meat and poultry

§ 679c - Expansion of Food Safety Inspection Service activities

§ 680 - Authorization of appropriations

§ 683 - Interstate shipment of meat inspected by Federal and State agencies for certain small establishments

§ 691 - Omitted

§ 692 - Inspection extended to reindeer

§ 693 - Inspection of dairy products for export

§ 694 - Authorization of appropriations

§ 695 - Payment of cost of meat-inspection service; exception

Title 9 published on 05-Jan-2018 04:02

The following are ALL rules, proposed rules, and notices (chronologically) published in the Federal Register relating to 9 CFR Part 310 after this date.

  • 2018-02-01; vol. 83 # 22 - Thursday, February 1, 2018
    1. 83 FR 4780 - Modernization of Swine Slaughter Inspection
      GPO FDSys XML | Text
      DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, Food Safety and Inspection Service
      Proposed rule.
      Comments must be received on or before April 2, 2018.
      9 CFR Parts 301, 309, and 310