The US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is proposing, for the first time, to treat Salmonella as an adulterant for purposes of the Poultry Products Inspection Act. Under the proposal, breaded and stuffed raw chicken products—which the agency indicates have been associated with Salmonella illness outbreaks—would be considered adulterated and subject to rejection if they contain levels of Salmonella contamination that exceed a permissible threshold established by the FSIS.
This action follows the release of the FSIS’s proposed framework to enhance testing and monitoring of Salmonella during poultry slaughter. In October, AWI submitted extensive comments on that proposal, arguing that the agency failed to take into account an important factor contributing to Salmonella contamination—the frequent mistreatment and mishandling of birds during the slaughter process. (See AWI Quarterly, spring 2023.) The FSIS is accepting comments on the proposal to treat Salmonella as an adulterant through July 27.