Constituent Update – January 29, 2021

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Tips for Faster Label Approval Process

Labels are currently taking about 3-5 business days to evaluate. 

TIP: The appeal function in the Label Submission and Approval System (LSAS) should be used only when the establishment and FSIS cannot come to a consensus on a label modification or return. 

The purpose of the “appeal function” in LSAS is to provide establishments with a means to appeal a FSIS staff officer’s final label adjudication decision, such as when a label is modified, and the company doesn’t agree with the change. However, FSIS has observed that establishments often mistakenly use the appeal function to resubmit a corrected label or update a label application with additional information. When FSIS returns a label application, the first course of action should be for the establishment to resubmit the label application with additional information or to submit an updated label with the changes FSIS requested. If they are not in agreement with the changes FSIS requested, the establishment should resubmit the label application with a detailed description as to why the establishment disagrees with the reasons noted for return. An establishment may also reach out to the FSIS staff officer directly by telephone, by using the LSAS message function, or by submitting an inquiry through askFSIS to further discuss reasons for return as well as sketch modifications.

The appeal function should only be used when the establishment and FSIS staff officer who evaluated the label application cannot come to an agreement on the disposition of the label or labels that were adjudicated in LSAS. The Agency strongly encourages establishments to communicate with the FSIS staff officer rather than submit a formal appeal, so the process may move along quickly.

For assistance on resubmitting a label application that has been returned in LSAS, please see the “Handle A Returned Label Application” section in the LSAS User Guide on page 137 at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/wcm/connect/45a29f18-52cc-4012-8790-ab7ea9f980c9/LSAS-Industry-User-Guide-090619.pdf?MOD=AJPERES

FSIS will continue to provide updates regarding label turnaround time, as well as suggestions to assist industry to streamline label submissions in its Constituent Update.

FSIS Posts FY 2019 Sampling Summary

FSIS has posted the FY 2019 Sampling Summary to share retrospective FSIS sampling information with consumers and other stakeholders. The summary includes results from the domestic microbiological and chemical sampling projects for beef, pork, Siluriformes, poultry, and ready-to-eat products. In addition, the report includes import residue and microbiological sampling, whole genome sequencing information, National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) sampling, and other sampling for special projects.

Since 2018, FSIS has annually published the sampling catalog. This is the first year that FSIS has shared a contextual sampling summary to complement the sampling catalog in the Agency’s continuing effort to enhance transparency and provide consumers and other stakeholders with reliable and timely information.

As a science-based agency, FSIS uses data to inform decision making and drive continuous improvement of processes. FSIS evaluates these sampling data and shares the data, including analyses, on the FSIS website.

To view the sampling summary, visit https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/data-collection-and-reports.

To view additional data and learn more about FSIS sampling, visit https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/science/Sampling+Programs.

Policy Update

FSIS notices and directives on public health and regulatory issues are available at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/regulations. The following policy update was recently issued:

FSIS Notice 05-21 – Quarterly Establishment Information Letters

Export Requirements Update

The Library of Export Requirements has been updated for products for the following countries:

  • Canada 
  • Colombia 
  • Cuba 
  • Iraq 
  • Japan 
  • Philippines 
  • Ukraine



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