[Federal Register Volume 72, Number 90 (Thursday, May 10, 2007)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 26567-26568]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 07-2202]


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Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

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Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 90 / Thursday, May 10, 2007 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 26567]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Food Safety and Inspection Service

9 CFR Part 381

[Docket No. FSIS-2007-0016]


Eligibility of Chile To Export Poultry and Poultry Products to 
the United States: Proposed Rule Comment Period Extension and Notice of 
New Information

AGENCY: Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Proposed rule; supplemental information.

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SUMMARY: The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is providing 
additional information about the basis on which it has tentatively 
concluded that Chile's inspection system for poultry and poultry 
products is equivalent to that of the United States. FSIS published a 
proposed rule (FSIS-2006-0030) in the Federal Register of February 26, 
2007 (72 FR 8293-8296), that would add Chile to the list of countries 
eligible to export poultry and poultry products to the United States. A 
comment on the proposal noted a deficiency that FSIS found in its 
onsite audit of Chile's inspection system and questioned how, given 
that deficiency, FSIS could find Chile's system equivalent. FSIS is 
addressing this concern in this supplement to the proposed rule. Given 
that FSIS is providing additional information to explain the basis for 
its tentative finding of equivalency, FSIS is re-opening the comment 
period on the proposed rule to May 25, 2007.

DATES: Submit comments by May 25, 2007.

ADDRESSES: FSIS invites interested persons to submit comments on the 
proposed rule referenced in this document. Comments may be submitted by 
any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: This Web site provides the 
ability to type short comments directly into the comment field on this 
Web page or attach a file for lengthier comments. FSIS prefers to 
receive comments through the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to http://www.regulations.gov and, in the ``Search for Open Regulations'' box, 
select ``Food Safety and Inspection Service'' and ``Proposed Rules'' 
from the agency drop-down menu and then click on ``Submit.'' In the 
Docket ID column, select the FDMS Docket Number to submit or view 
public comments and to view supporting and related materials available 
electronically. After the close of the comment period, the docket can 
be viewed using the ``Advanced Search'' function in Regulations.gov.
     Mail, including floppy disks or CD-ROM's, and hand- or 
courier-delivered items: Send to Docket Clerk, U.S. Department of 
Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, 300 12th Street, SW., 
Room 102 Cotton Annex, Washington, DC 20250.
     Electronic mail: [email protected].
    All submissions received must include the Agency name and docket 
number FSIS-2006-0030.
    All comments submitted in response to this proposed rule will be 
posted to the regulations.gov Web site. Comments will also be available 
for public inspection in the FSIS Docket Room at the address listed 
above between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For further information contact Daniel 
Engeljohn, Ph.D., Deputy Assistant Administrator for Office of Policy, 
Program and Employee Development, FSIS, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 
Room 3147, South Building, 14th and Independence, SW., Washington, DC 
20250-3700; telephone (202) 205-0495, fax (202) 401-1760, 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    FSIS is the public health regulatory agency in the U.S. Department 
of Agriculture (USDA) responsible for ensuring that the nation's 
commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products is safe, 
wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged. Under the Poultry 
Products Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 466), FSIS must evaluate a foreign 
country's inspection system before determining that country is eligible 
to export poultry or poultry products. This evaluation consists of two 
parts: A document review and an on-site review. The document review is 
an evaluation of the laws, regulations, and other written materials 
used by the country to effect its inspection program. If the document 
review is satisfactory, the on-site review is scheduled. It is 
conducted by a multi-disciplinary team that evaluates all aspects of 
the country's inspection program, including its laboratories and 
individual establishments within the country. The process of 
determining equivalence is described fully on the FSIS Web site at 
http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations_&_policies/equivalence_process/index.asp.
    The FSIS review of Chile's poultry inspection system found that 
Chile's requirements are equivalent to the relevant provisions of the 
PPIA and the regulations that implement that statute. The FSIS on-site 
review of Chile's poultry inspection system in August 2005 found, 
however, that Chile was not conducting species verification testing as 
required.
    Chile immediately committed to remedying this deficiency and has 
documented the steps that it has taken to implement species 
verification testing. FSIS has evaluated the documentation provided by 
Chile and is confident that Chile has sufficient controls in place to 
ensure that species verification testing is being performed. It is 
noteworthy that FSIS audited Chile's beef slaughter inspection system 
in March-April 2006 and found that species verification testing is 
being performed by the Chilean government in the beef slaughter 
establishments certified to export to the United States.
    FSIS documentation of the materials submitted by Chile to satisfy 
the species verification requirement for poultry can be found online as 
an addendum to the 2005 FSIS audit of Chile's poultry inspection system 
at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations_&_policies/Foreign_Audit_Reports/index.asp.
    FSIS is re-opening the comment period for this proposed rule so 
that the public can have an opportunity to comment on the new 
information that the Agency is making available. Comments must be 
received by May 25, 2007.

[[Page 26568]]

    Under this proposed rule, poultry and poultry products processed in 
certified Chilean establishments may be exported to the United States. 
All such products will be subject to re-inspection at United States 
ports-of-entry by FSIS inspectors.

E-Government Act Compliance

    The Food Safety and Inspection Service is committed to complying 
with the E-Government Act, to promote the use of the Internet and other 
information technologies to provide increased opportunities for citizen 
access to Government information and services, and for other purposes.

Additional Public Notification

    Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy 
development is important. Consequently, in an effort to ensure that 
minorities, women, and persons with disabilities are aware of this 
document, FSIS will announce it on-line through the FSIS Web page 
located at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/regulations_&_policies/2007_Proposed_Rules_Index/index.asp. FSIS will also make copies of this 
Federal Register publication available through the FSIS Constituent 
Update, which is used to provide information regarding FSIS policies, 
procedures, regulations, Federal Register notices, FSIS public 
meetings, recalls, and other types of information that could affect or 
would be of interest to constituents and stakeholders. The update is 
communicated via Listserv, a free electronic mail subscription service 
for industry, trade and farm groups, consumer interest groups, allied 
health professionals, and other individuals who have asked to be 
included. The update is available on the FSIS Web page. Through the 
Listserv and Web page, FSIS is able to provide information to a much 
broader and more diverse audience. In addition, FSIS offers an e-mail 
subscription service which provides automatic and customized access to 
selected food safety news and information. This service is available at 
http://www.fsis.usda.gov/news_and_events/email_subscription/. 
Options range from recalls to export information to regulations, 
directives and notices. Customers can add or delete subscriptions 
themselves and have the option to password-protect their account.

    Done at Washington, DC, on April 30, 2007.
David P. Goldman,
Acting Administrator.
[FR Doc. 07-2202 Filed 5-9-07; 8:45 am]
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