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USDA wants comments on new food safety rule

USDA wants comments on new food safety rule

   The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is seeking comments on proposed measures to enhance the nation's food safety.

   The proposed rule would implement a provision in the 2008 Farm Bill and is a priority of the Food Safety Working Group, the USDA said.

Vilsack

   'One year ago the president called on government to do more to ensure our food is safe, and we are working aggressively every day to improve the food safety system in the United States,' said U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack in a statement.

   The new proposed rule would require that regulated establishments:

   ' Promptly notify FSIS if any unsafe, unwholesome on misbranded meat or poultry product has entered commerce.

   ' Prepare and maintain current procedures for the recall of meat and poultry products produced and shipped by the establishments.

   ' Document each reassessment of the establishment's process control plans or Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) plans.

   The proposed rule supports the Food Safety Working Group 'Key Findings' announced on July 7, 2009. President Obama formed the working group on March 14, 2009 and charged USDA's Vilsack and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to lead it.

   Comments regarding the adopted regulations must be received by FSIS no later than May 24 through the Federal eRulemaking Portal.