Northern Ireland’s raw pork exports to the United States may continue after a favorable on-site audit of that country’s meat inspection system by USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).
FSIS let Northern Ireland’s Chief Veterinarian Robert Huey know the draft final report of the audit was available by letter on Jan. 3, 2018 and the agency published both the letter and draft final report on the agency’s website on March 12.
FSIS auditors conducted their on-site examination of Northern Ireland’s meat inspection system from Sept. 18 to Sept. 26, 2017. The Belfast exit meeting with the Irish authorities, which FSIS refers to as the Central Competent Authority or CCA, was held on the final day.
“The FSIS auditor concluded that Northern Ireland’s meat inspection system is organized to provide ultimate control, supervision, and enforcement of regulatory requirements,” according to the draft final report. “The CCA has implemented sanitary operating procedures and a HACCP system to ensure controls of the meat inspection system. Also, the CCA has implemented a microbiological and chemical residue testing programs that are organized and administered by the national to verify its system. An analysis of each component did not identify any systemic findings representing an immediate threat to public health.”