FSIS will continue to conduct on-line carcass-by-carcass inspection as mandated by law. This rule will allow FSIS personnel to conduct a more efficient carcass-by-carcass inspection with agency resources focused on more effective food safety measures. Data collected by the Agency over the past several years suggests that offline inspection activities are more effective in improving food safety. Inspection activities conducted off the evisceration line include pathogen sampling, and verifying that establishments are maintaining sanitary conditions and controlling food safety hazards at Critical Control Points in the production process.
· Zero tolerance policy for six Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) serogroups. Raw ground beef, its components, and tenderized steaks found to contain E. coli O26, O103, O45, O111, O121 or O145 will be prohibited from sale to consumers. USDA will launch a testing program to detect these dangerous pathogens and prevent them from reaching consumers.
· Test and hold policy that will significantly reduce consumer exposure to unsafe meat products, should the policy become final, because products cannot be released into commerce until Agency test results for dangerous contaminants are known.
· Labeling requirements that provide better information to consumers about their food by requiring nutrition information for single-ingredient raw meat and poultry products and ground or chopped products.
· Public Health Information System, a modernized, comprehensive database about public health trends and food safety violations at the nearly 6,100 plants FSIS regulates.