Information About an Application for Grant of Inspection

Requirements for a Grant of Inspection:

  • Facilities suitable to meet regulatory sanitation performance standards
  • Written sanitation standard operating procedures (SSOP) and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) plans
  • Slaughter establishments must have written testing procedures for Escherichia coli Biotype 1 (E. coli)
  • Establishments that produce certain Ready To Eat products must have a plan to prevent product adulteration by the pathogenic environmental contaminant Listeria monocytogenes

Applicants must submit a completed application and a plot plan drawing of their facility showing the official premise location to the Meat Safety Assurance Section.

1. Sanitation Performance Standards

9CFR §416.1 (Title 9, Code of Federal Regulations) states that, "Each official establishment must be operated and maintained in a manner sufficient to prevent the creation of insanitary conditions and to ensure that product is not adulterated."

The Sanitation Performance Standards Compliance Guide issued by the United States Department of Agriculture – Food Safety and Inspection Service is an excellent document to use as a guide in meeting the performance standards and should be used throughout planning, construction, and operation of inspected meat and poultry establishments.

2. Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures (SSOP)

Regulations require that meat and poultry establishments develop, implement, and maintain written standard operating procedures for sanitation (SSOPs). SSOPs must describe all procedures an establishment will conduct daily, before and during operations, to prevent direct contamination or adulteration of product(s). SSOPs must describe which procedures will be conducted before the start of operations and those that will be conducted during operations. SSOPs should include an inspection checklist and a corrective action record to document daily the procedures conducted and to document any corrective actions taken in response to observed deficiencies.

3. Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP)

Regulations require meat and poultry establishments to take preventive and corrective measures at each stage of the food production process where food safety hazards are likely to occur. This is accomplished by developing and implementing HACCP into the operation process. Regulations require each establishment to conduct, or have conducted for it, a hazard analysis, which includes a flow chart that describes or diagrams the steps of each process and product flow in the establishment, and develop and implement a HACCP plan that controls each hazard identified. The person developing and reassessing the HACCP plan must have successfully completed a course of instruction in the application of the seven HACCP principles to meat or poultry product processing. The International HACCP Alliance web page lists currently scheduled courses. The various meat processing associations may have information regarding availability of training or be able to recommend HACCP trained consultants to develop the plan. Regional MSA staff are also available to help direct you to training courses or materials.

4. Escherichia coli (E. coli) Sampling Program

9CFR, §310.25(a) (for livestock) and 9 CFR, §381.94(a) (for poultry) require that all slaughter establishments operating under a Grant of Inspection must develop and implement a written E. coli sampling program. The program must describe the procedures for collecting and submitting samples for E. coli testing and must identify the establishment employee designated to collect the sample. The procedures must address the location where the sample will be collected, how randomness of sampling will be achieved, and how samples will be handled to ensure sample integrity.

5. Listeria monocytogenes Control

9 CFR, §430.4(a) states that: “Listeria monocytogenes can contaminate RTE {Ready to eat} products that are exposed to the environment after they have undergone a lethality treatment…” Establishments that produce certain Ready To Eat products must have a plan to prevent product adulteration by the pathogenic environmental contaminant L. monocytogenes. The establishment can select one of three alternatives from the regulation to meet the requirement.

6. Labeling and Marking

Meat and poultry products produced under inspection must bear the official mark of inspection. Before using a label, mark, or device that will be applied to inspected meat or poultry products, the establishment representative must obtain approval from DSHS by submitting a completed application for label approval (Z-1) and a label sketch to the inspector in charge (IIC) or other DSHS-MSA representative.