The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing a new date for when it will implement routine verification sampling and testing for raw beef manufacturing trimmings for six non-O157 Shigatoxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) serogroups (O26, O45, O103, O111, O121, and O145). This new date will provide additional time for establishments and laboratories to validate their test methods.

FSIS announced in September 2011 plans to test certain raw beef products for these six STEC serogroups in addition to O157:H7. FSIS has determined that these organisms are adulterants of raw ground beef products and product components under the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA).

DATES: Beginning June 4, 2012, FSIS will implement routine verification activities, including testing, for the six additional STEC discussed in this document (O26, O45, O103, O111, O121, and O145), of raw beef manufacturing trimmings (domestic or imported) derived from cattle slaughtered on or after June 4, 2012. To facilitate compliance with the policy, and to allow industry time to implement any necessary changes in their food safety systems, FSIS will generally not regard raw, non-intact beef products or the components of these products found to have these pathogens as adulterated until June 4, 2012.

Read more from USDA/FSIS.