The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is proposing new safety regulations for egg products used in food items, such as cake, pudding mixes, ice cream, pasta and mayonnaise.
They proposed a new plan on Tuesday that would require producers to develop safety plans and ensure eggs are free of detectable pathogens like salmonella. The 252-page draft rule would require egg plants to use Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) planning and sanitation standard operating procedures that are consistent with meat and poultry regulations.
Egg products includes whole eggs, eggs whites and egg yolk in refrigerated, frozen, liquid and dried forms that are available in a number of different products, according to the American Egg Board. Egg products also refer to eggs that are removed from their shells for processing at facilities called “breaker points.”
The rule is meant to modernize and update the current food safety inspection systems at egg plants. It is meant to replace current regulations with plant management, pest control and sanitation, including rooms, doors, windows, lighting and ventilation. With this rule, plant owners and managers will be able to adapt these new systems to their facilities and equipment.
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93% of egg produce plants already use HACCP plans
About 93% of egg producing facilities already operate under HACCP plans for at least one step in their production process.
“As we continue to modernize inspection systems and processes, we are committed to strengthening consistency across the services that FSIS inspection personnel carry out for the consuming public,” Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety, Carmen Rottenberg, said in a statement.
“This proposed rule will ensure the same level of inspection and oversight of all regulated products as we carry out our public health mission.”
The public will have 120 days to comment as soon as the Federal Register publishes the new rule.