United Egg Producers has outlined proposed changes to its 5-Star Assurance Program that will “help ensure the safety of the nation’s egg supply and provide consumers with an assurance that the egg industry is doing everything possible to produce a safe product,” according to Krista Eberle, UEP Director of Food Safety Programs.
The updated program, renamed the UEP 5-Star Egg Safety Program, mirrors many of the aspects of the Food and Drug Administration's Egg Safety Rule introduced in July 2010, particularly with respect to biosecurity, integrated pest management, cleaning and disinfection, environmental and egg testing for Salmonella enteritidis and refrigeration. One significant addition to the FDA program involves the required administration of both live and inactivated vaccines.
Participation in the UEP 5-Star program is voluntary and auditing will be carried out by Validus Services. It is anticipated that the final draft of the program will be presented to the Food Safety Committee and the Board of the UEP in May, with implementation of audits in August.