Petition To Permit Waivers of Maximum Line Speeds for Young Chicken Establishments Operating Under the New Poultry Inspection System
The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is responding to public comments on a the "Petition To Permit Waivers of Maximum Line Speeds for Young Chicken Establishments Operating Under the New Poultry Inspection System; Criteria for Consideration of Waiver Requests for Young Chicken Establishments To Operate at Line Speeds of Up to 175 Bir" submitted by the National Chicken Council (NCC) on September 1, 2017, and is also providing information on the criteria applicable to line speed waivers for young chicken establishments. The NCC submitted a petition to FSIS requesting that the Agency establish a waiver program to permit young chicken slaughter establishments to operate without line speed limits if they participate in the New Poultry Inspection System (NPIS) and the FSIS Salmonella Initiative Program (SIP) and develop a system for monitoring and responding to loss of process control. FSIS issued a response denying the petition on January 29, 2018. The response explained that instead of establishing a separate line speed waiver program under the conditions requested in the petition, FSIS would make available criteria that it will use under its existing waiver procedures to consider individual waiver requests from young chicken establishments to operate at line speeds of up to 175 bpm.
FSIS published these criteria in the February 23, 2018, Constituent Update. This notice provides additional information on the criteria that FSIS will use to evaluate new line speed waiver request submissions. Additionally, FSIS is announcing that the 20 young chicken establishments already operating under line speed waivers must meet the new criteria to remain eligible for the waiver. FSIS will issue these establishments new waiver letters that reflect the eligibility criteria described in this document. Failure by establishments already operating under line speed waivers to meet the new criteria within 120 days of receipt of these letters may result in the revocation of the waivers.