The FDA announced its inspections under the Final Rule will commence in the Northeast and Midwest regions during October. The program of inspecting up to 600 farms will take at least a year.

Producers are urged to review the draft Guidance Document and to conform to requirements with respect to records, rodent control, biosecurity and good production practices.

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It will be unfortunate if inexperienced inspectors present reports to their superiors which do not reflect conditions contributing to either introduction or perpetuation of SE in egg production operations. The problem will be further exacerbated if the FDA continues with its policy of prematurely publicizing alleged deviations from what they regard as “standard”. The effect of adverse media reports is evident in the decline in consumption which is responsible for the considerable decrease in the UB price since the announcement of the Wright County Eggs recall.

Producers are encouraged to report on their findings relating to interaction with inspectors and any problems or difficulties experienced during or subsequent to inspections. Plaudits and favorable observations will also be welcomed. I can be contacted at sshane@wattnet.net. Comments will be held in confidence and no release of names or farm locations or affiliations will appear in Egg Industry unless permission is granted.