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USDA/FSIS RIN: 0583-AD39 Publication ID: Fall 2010 
Title: Electronic Imported Product Inspection Applications; Electronic Foreign Imported Product and Foreign Establishment Certifications; Deletion of Streamlined Inspection Procedures for Canadian Product 
Abstract: FSIS is proposing to amend the meat, poultry, and egg products import inspection regulations to provide for an electronic application, and electronic imported product and foreign establishment certification system. FSIS is also proposing to delete the “streamlined” import inspection procedures for Canadian product. In addition, the Agency is proposing that official import inspection establishment must develop, implement, and maintain written Sanitation SOPs, as provided in 9 CFR 416.11 through 416.17. 
Agency: Department of Agriculture(USDA)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
CFR Citation: 9 CFR 304.3    9 CFR 327.2 and 327.4    9 CFR 381.196 to 381.198    9 CFR 590.915 and 590.920   
Legal Authority: Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 USC 601 to 695), the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 USC 451 to 470)    Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA) (21 USC 1031 to 1056)   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need: FSIS is proposing these regulations to provide for the electronic import system, which will be available through the Agency's Public Health Information System (PHIS), a computerized, Web-based inspection information system. The import system will enable applicants to electronically submit and track import inspection applications that are required for all commercial entries of FSIS regulated products imported in to the U.S. FSIS inspection program personnel will be able to access the PHIS system to assign appropriate imported product inspection activities. The electronic import system will also facilitate the foreign imported product and annual foreign establishment certifications by providing immediate and direct electronic government-to-government exchange of information. The Agency is proposing to delete the Canadian streamlined import inspection procedures because they have not been in use since 1990 and are obsolete. Sanitation SOPs are written procedures establishments develop, implement, and maintain to prevent direct contamination or adulteration of meat or poultry products. To ensure that imported meat and poultry products do not become contaminated while undergoing reinspection prior to entering the U.S., FSIS is proposing to clarify that official import inspection establishments must develop written Sanitation SOPs.

Summary of the Legal Basis: The authorities for this proposed rule are: the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601 to 695), the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451 to 470), Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA)(21 U.S.C. 1031 to 1056) and the regulations that implement these Acts.

Alternatives: The use of the electronic import system is voluntary. The Agency will continue to accept and process paper import inspection applications, and foreign establishment and foreign imported product certificates. The Canadian streamlined import inspection procedures are not currently in use. Proposing Sanitation SOPs in official import inspection establishments will prevent direct contamination or adulteration of product. Therefore, no alternatives were considered.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits: Under this proposed rule, the industry will have the option of filing inspection applications electronically and submitting electronic foreign product and establishment certificates through the PHIS. Since the electronic option is voluntary; applicants and the foreign countries that choose to file electronically will do so only if the benefits outweigh the cost. Sanitation (SOPs) are a condition of approval for official import inspection establishments, and as a requirement for official import inspection establishments to continue to operate under Federal inspection. The proposed rule will clarify that official import inspection establishments must have developed written Sanitation SOPs before being granted approval and that existing official import inspection establishments must meet Sanitation SOP requirements. Since, in practice, FSIS has always expected official import inspection establishments to maintain Sanitation SOPs during the reinspection of imported products, the proposed amendment for these sanitation requirements will have little, if any, cost impact on the industry.

Risks: None.

Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  12/00/2010    
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: Businesses  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
International Impacts: This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Mary Stanley
Director, International Relations and Strategic Planning Staff (IRSPS)
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
Office of Policy and Program Development, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 2925, South Building,
Washington, DC 20250-3700
Phone:202 720-0287
Fax:202 720-4929

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