Availability of FSIS Guideline To Assist With the Donation of Eligible Meat & Poultry Products to Non-Profit Organizations, 83029-83030 [2020-28082]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 245 / Monday, December 21, 2020 / Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Food Safety and Inspection Service [Docket No. FSIS–2020–0030] Availability of FSIS Guideline To Assist With the Donation of Eligible Meat & Poultry Products to Non-Profit Organizations Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice of availability and request for comments. AGENCY: The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing the availability of and requesting comment on a guideline for meat and poultry establishments interested in donating products to non-profit organizations. FSIS has received several questions from meat and poultry establishments and non-profit organizations on this subject and has decided to address the major concerns associated with donation in this guideline. FSIS encourages establishments to donate meat and poultry products to non-profit organizations, when possible, to reduce food loss and waste. DATES: Submit Comments on or before February 19, 2021. ADDRESSES: A downloadable version of the guideline is available to view and print at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/ portal/fsis/topics/regulatorycompliance/guidelines. No hard copies of the guideline have been published. FSIS invites interested persons to submit comments on this proposed rule. Comments may be submitted by one of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: This website provides the ability to type short comments directly into the comment field on this web page or attach a file for lengthier comments. Go to https://www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions at that site for submitting comments. • Mail, including CD–ROMs, etc.: Send to Docket Clerk, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Mailstop 3758, Washington, DC 20250–3700. • Hand- or courier-delivered submittals: Deliver to 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Jamie L. Whitten Building, Room 350–E, Washington, DC 20250–3700. Instructions: All items submitted by mail or electronic mail must include the Agency name and docket number FSIS– 2016–0026. Comments received in response to this docket will be made SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 22:33 Dec 18, 2020 Jkt 253001 available for public inspection and posted without change, including any personal information, to https:// www.regulations.gov. Docket: For access to background documents or comments received, call (202) 720–5627 to schedule a time to visit the FSIS Docket Room at 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250–3700. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rachel Edelstein, Assistant Administrator, Office of Policy and Program Development by telephone at (202) 205–0495. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background In the United States, food waste is estimated as constituting between 30–40 percent of the food supply. This figure, based on estimates from USDA’s Economic Research Service of a 31 percent food loss at the retail and consumer levels, corresponds to approximately 133 billion pounds and $161 billion worth of food in 2010. Wasted food is the single largest category of material placed in municipal landfills and represents nourishment that could have helped feed families in need.1 Additionally, water, energy, and labor used to produce wasted food could have been employed for other purposes. Effectively reducing food waste will require cooperation among federal, state, tribal and local governments, faith-based institutions, environmental organizations, communities, and the entire supply chain. In October 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) launched the Winning on Reducing Food Waste Initiative in a formal agreement.2 As part of the initiative, the agencies affirmed their shared commitment to work towards the national goal of reducing food loss and waste by 50 percent by 2030. The agencies agreed to coordinate food loss and waste actions such as education and outreach, research, community investments, voluntary programs, public-private partnerships, tool development, technical assistance, event participation, and policy discussion on the impacts and importance of reducing food loss and waste. While there have been significant actions taken and commitments made through public1 See: https://www.ers.usda.gov/webdocs/ publications/43833/43680_eib121.pdf?v=4126.8. 2 See: https://www.usda.gov/sites/default/files/ documents/usda-fda-epa-formal-agreement.pdf. PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 83029 private partnerships to date, there is still much work to be done. More information on USDA’s Winning on Reducing Food Waste Initiative can be found on the USDA website at: https:// www.usda.gov/foodlossandwaste/ winning. FSIS believes that meat and poultry businesses can be a critical component of reducing food loss and waste. Therefore, FSIS is announcing the availability of a guideline to help meat and poultry establishments understand FSIS’s requirements for donating meat and poultry products to non-profit organizations. The guideline explains inspection, labeling, and shipping requirements and exemptions. FSIS encourages interested parties to follow this guideline. This guideline represents current FSIS thinking, and FSIS will update it as necessary to reflect comments received and any additional information that becomes available. FSIS is seeking comments on this guideline as part of its efforts to continuously assess and improve the effectiveness of policy documents. Additional Public Notification Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy development is important. Consequently, FSIS will announce this Federal Register publication online through the FSIS web page located at: http:// www.fsis.usda.gov/federal-register. FSIS also will make copies of this publication available through the FSIS Constituent Update, which is used to provide information regarding FSIS policies, procedures, regulations, Federal Register notices, FSIS public meetings, and other types of information that could affect or would be of interest to our constituents and stakeholders. The Constituent Update is available on the FSIS web page. Through the web page, FSIS can provide information to a much broader, more diverse audience. In addition, FSIS offers an email subscription service which provides automatic and customized access to selected food safety news and information. This service is available at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/subscribe. Options range from recalls to export information, regulations, directives, and notices. Customers can add or delete subscriptions themselves and have the option to password protect their accounts. USDA Non-Discrimination Statement No agency, officer, or employee of the USDA shall, on the grounds of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/ E:\FR\FM\21DEN1.SGM 21DEN1 83030 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 245 / Monday, December 21, 2020 / Notices parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, or political beliefs, exclude from participation in, deny the benefits of, or subject to discrimination, any person in the United States under any program or activity conducted by the USDA. How To File a Complaint of Discrimination To file a complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, which may be accessed online at: http:// www.ocio.usda.gov/sites/default/files/ docs/2012/Complain_combined_6_8_ 12.pdf, or write a letter signed by you or your authorized representative. Send your completed complaint form or letter to USDA by mail, fax, or email: Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250–9410. Fax: (202) 690–7442. Email: program.intake@usda.gov. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.), should contact USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720–2600 (voice and TDD). Done in Washington, DC. Paul Kiecker, Administrator. [FR Doc. 2020–28082 Filed 12–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–DM–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Food Safety and Inspection Service [Docket No. FSIS–2018–0034] Availability of FSIS Guideline for Industry Response to Customer Complaints Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice of availability. AGENCY: The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing the availability of an updated version of the guideline for industry on how to respond to customer complaints of meat and poultry products contaminated with foreign materials. FSIS originally published the guideline in March 2019. Additionally, FSIS is responding to comments received on the March 2019 guideline. ADDRESSES: A downloadable version of the guideline is available to view and print at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/ portal/fsis/topics/regulatorycompliance/compliance-guides-index. No hard copies of the guideline have been published. SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 22:33 Dec 18, 2020 Jkt 253001 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rachel Edelstein, Assistant Administrator, Office of Policy and Program Development; Telephone: (202) 205–0495. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) administers a regulatory program under the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451 et seq.), and the Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA) (21 U.S.C. 1031 et seq.) to protect the health and welfare of consumers. The Agency is responsible for ensuring that meat, poultry, and egg products are safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged. Updated Guideline On March 11, 2019, FSIS announced the availability of a guideline to assist all FSIS-regulated establishments that slaughter, or further process inspected meat and poultry products to develop and implement procedures for responding to customer complaints of adulterated and misbranded meat and poultry products (84 FR 8662). FSIS has updated the guideline based on comments received. Specifically, FSIS revised and reorganized the guideline to improve readability; further clarified that a customer complaint program is not required; included methods for establishments to demonstrate control of products; added information on when establishments must notify FSIS that adulterated or misbranded products have entered commerce; added and clarified when establishments are required to address foreign material contamination in their Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) plan; and clarified applicable regulatory requirements for corrective actions, reassessments, and recall procedures. While FSIS specifically developed this document to address foreign material customer complaints, establishments can apply the information to other customer complaints of adulterated or misbranded products in commerce. FSIS encourages establishments that may receive customer complaints regarding adulterated or misbranded meat and poultry products to follow this guideline. This document does not present or describe any new regulatory requirements. This guideline represents current FSIS thinking, and FSIS will update it as necessary to reflect comments received and any additional information that becomes available. PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Comments and Responses FSIS received public comments from six trade associations, a poultry products producer, a pork products producer, a consumer advocacy organization, a HACCP consulting group, and an equipment manufacturer. A summary of the comments and the Agency’s responses follows: Foreign Material Adulteration Comment: Several trade associations stated that the guidelines applied an overreaching and overly broad concept of the term ‘‘adulteration’’ by suggesting that any amount of foreign material, regardless of size or nature, adulterates meat and poultry products. The comments asserted that not all contaminants are food safety hazards and that the guidelines should reflect a risk-based approach to foreign material adulteration, taking into account whether the foreign material would present a health hazard. Response: The FMIA and the PPIA (21 U.S.C. 601 and 453) and FSIS regulations (9 CFR 301.2, 381.1, and 531.1) state that the term ‘‘adulterated’’ applies, among other circumstances, to meat or poultry products: —If it bears or contains any poisonous or deleterious substance which may render it injurious to health; —if it consists in whole or in part of any filthy, putrid, or decomposed substance or is for any other reason unsound, unhealthful, unwholesome, or otherwise unfit for human food; —if it has been prepared, packed, or held under insanitary conditions whereby it may have become contaminated with filth, or whereby it may have been rendered injurious to health. Thus, under the FMIA and PPIA and the regulations, the presence of foreign materials adulterates meat and poultry products. Examples of foreign materials found in meat and poultry products include: Glass or metal fragments, which are deleterious substances that may injure health; machinery pieces, such as rubber or plastic, which are filthy, or unwholesome, or unfit for food; or sand or rocks, which typically contaminate food products because of preparation under insanitary conditions. FSIS disagrees that the Agency’s interpretation of ‘‘adulteration’’ is overly broad. FSIS assesses the public health concern or hazard presented when a recall action is initiated for products adulterated with foreign materials. FSIS categorizes the recall as Class I (reasonable probability that the use of the products will cause serious, adverse E:\FR\FM\21DEN1.SGM 21DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 245 (Monday, December 21, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 83029-83030]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-28082]



[[Page 83029]]

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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Food Safety and Inspection Service

[Docket No. FSIS-2020-0030]


Availability of FSIS Guideline To Assist With the Donation of 
Eligible Meat & Poultry Products to Non-Profit Organizations

AGENCY: Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of availability and request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing 
the availability of and requesting comment on a guideline for meat and 
poultry establishments interested in donating products to non-profit 
organizations. FSIS has received several questions from meat and 
poultry establishments and non-profit organizations on this subject and 
has decided to address the major concerns associated with donation in 
this guideline. FSIS encourages establishments to donate meat and 
poultry products to non-profit organizations, when possible, to reduce 
food loss and waste.

DATES: Submit Comments on or before February 19, 2021.

ADDRESSES: A downloadable version of the guideline is available to view 
and print at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/regulatory-compliance/guidelines. No hard copies of the guideline have 
been published.
    FSIS invites interested persons to submit comments on this proposed 
rule. Comments may be submitted by one of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: This website provides the 
ability to type short comments directly into the comment field on this 
web page or attach a file for lengthier comments. Go to https://www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions at that site for 
submitting comments.
     Mail, including CD-ROMs, etc.: Send to Docket Clerk, U.S. 
Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, 1400 
Independence Avenue SW, Mailstop 3758, Washington, DC 20250-3700.
     Hand- or courier-delivered submittals: Deliver to 1400 
Independence Avenue SW, Jamie L. Whitten Building, Room 350-E, 
Washington, DC 20250-3700.
    Instructions: All items submitted by mail or electronic mail must 
include the Agency name and docket number FSIS-2016-0026. Comments 
received in response to this docket will be made available for public 
inspection and posted without change, including any personal 
information, to https://www.regulations.gov.
    Docket: For access to background documents or comments received, 
call (202) 720-5627 to schedule a time to visit the FSIS Docket Room at 
1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250-3700.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rachel Edelstein, Assistant 
Administrator, Office of Policy and Program Development by telephone at 
(202) 205-0495.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    In the United States, food waste is estimated as constituting 
between 30-40 percent of the food supply. This figure, based on 
estimates from USDA's Economic Research Service of a 31 percent food 
loss at the retail and consumer levels, corresponds to approximately 
133 billion pounds and $161 billion worth of food in 2010. Wasted food 
is the single largest category of material placed in municipal 
landfills and represents nourishment that could have helped feed 
families in need.\1\ Additionally, water, energy, and labor used to 
produce wasted food could have been employed for other purposes. 
Effectively reducing food waste will require cooperation among federal, 
state, tribal and local governments, faith-based institutions, 
environmental organizations, communities, and the entire supply chain.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ See: https://www.ers.usda.gov/webdocs/publications/43833/43680_eib121.pdf?v=4126.8.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In October 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the 
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Food and Drug 
Administration (FDA) launched the Winning on Reducing Food Waste 
Initiative in a formal agreement.\2\ As part of the initiative, the 
agencies affirmed their shared commitment to work towards the national 
goal of reducing food loss and waste by 50 percent by 2030. The 
agencies agreed to coordinate food loss and waste actions such as 
education and outreach, research, community investments, voluntary 
programs, public-private partnerships, tool development, technical 
assistance, event participation, and policy discussion on the impacts 
and importance of reducing food loss and waste. While there have been 
significant actions taken and commitments made through public-private 
partnerships to date, there is still much work to be done. More 
information on USDA's Winning on Reducing Food Waste Initiative can be 
found on the USDA website at: https://www.usda.gov/foodlossandwaste/winning.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ See: https://www.usda.gov/sites/default/files/documents/usda-fda-epa-formal-agreement.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    FSIS believes that meat and poultry businesses can be a critical 
component of reducing food loss and waste. Therefore, FSIS is 
announcing the availability of a guideline to help meat and poultry 
establishments understand FSIS's requirements for donating meat and 
poultry products to non-profit organizations. The guideline explains 
inspection, labeling, and shipping requirements and exemptions.
    FSIS encourages interested parties to follow this guideline. This 
guideline represents current FSIS thinking, and FSIS will update it as 
necessary to reflect comments received and any additional information 
that becomes available. FSIS is seeking comments on this guideline as 
part of its efforts to continuously assess and improve the 
effectiveness of policy documents.

Additional Public Notification

    Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy 
development is important. Consequently, FSIS will announce this Federal 
Register publication online through the FSIS web page located at: 
http://www.fsis.usda.gov/federal-register. FSIS also will make copies 
of this publication available through the FSIS Constituent Update, 
which is used to provide information regarding FSIS policies, 
procedures, regulations, Federal Register notices, FSIS public 
meetings, and other types of information that could affect or would be 
of interest to our constituents and stakeholders. The Constituent 
Update is available on the FSIS web page. Through the web page, FSIS 
can provide information to a much broader, more diverse audience. In 
addition, FSIS offers an email subscription service which provides 
automatic and customized access to selected food safety news and 
information. This service is available at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/subscribe. Options range from recalls to export information, 
regulations, directives, and notices. Customers can add or delete 
subscriptions themselves and have the option to password protect their 
accounts.

USDA Non-Discrimination Statement

    No agency, officer, or employee of the USDA shall, on the grounds 
of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual 
orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/

[[Page 83030]]

parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, or 
political beliefs, exclude from participation in, deny the benefits of, 
or subject to discrimination, any person in the United States under any 
program or activity conducted by the USDA.

How To File a Complaint of Discrimination

    To file a complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program 
Discrimination Complaint Form, which may be accessed online at: http://www.ocio.usda.gov/sites/default/files/docs/2012/Complain_combined_6_8_12.pdf, or write a letter signed by you or your 
authorized representative.
    Send your completed complaint form or letter to USDA by mail, fax, 
or email:
    Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of 
Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410.
    Fax: (202) 690-7442.
    Email: [email protected].
    Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for 
communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.), should contact 
USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

    Done in Washington, DC.
Paul Kiecker,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2020-28082 Filed 12-18-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-DM-P