FSIS has reservations about the technology after the AMI said officials from government body had recently “voiced concerns” about giving the green light to e-beams. The AMI has called for a meeting with the FSIS to deal with the hold up after tabling the proposal in July 2005.
“Given the substantial food safety benefits this technology offers it seems that the technical issues being raised four years after the petition’s submission can be appropriately addressed during the notice and comment rulemaking process,” said AMI executive vice president James Hodges in a letter to Jerold R. Mande, USDA deputy under secretary food safety.
The meat association is requesting that authorisation be granted so that e-beam irradiation can be applied to the surface of chilled beef carcasses as a food safety processing aid. The AMI described e-beam irradiation as “a promising technology”.
E-beams have been used for decades in the food and beverage sectors. They work by directing a shower of accelerated electrons through a high-voltage emitter towards a target.