In 1996, as part of the Pathogen Reduction; Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) Systems; Final Rule, USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service introduced the Salmonella verification program, which established pathogen reduction performance standards for a variety of FSIS-inspected product classes including whole broiler carcasses. These pathogen reduction performance standards were subsequently used to verify process control in meat and poultry processing establishments.

Since then, performance standards have become more rigorous, have extended to chicken parts, and plants have been put into “categories” based off of performance standard results. As such, many questions have arisen about what performance standards are, what they are not, how they are calculated, and how is the industry doing in meeting them.

The National Chicken Council posted a white paper on Jan. 4 to its website addressing these questions and more. This resource can be found on the National Chicken Council website by clicking here, and a downloadable/printable version is available here.