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What to do with meat dropped on the floor?

meat floor sanitation rework inedible

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#1 stim

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 04:05 PM

Hello All,

 

Today we had a question come up about returning meat that has been dropped on the floor back into production. We do not have a procedure for cleaning meat off with water and returning it, but it seems as though production has been pushing for this to happen to save dollars. They are willing to put pieces of fallen meat into inedible bins, but when it comes to dropping a 60lb block they are more hesitant.

 

Does anyone have a policy for dropped meat that involves not placing it in inedible automatically? If so how did you validate the risk?

 

Thanks!


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#2 Snookie

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 04:19 PM

http://www.cnn.com/2...a-meat-scandal/

 

While the biggest issue was expired meat with forged expiration dates, the film also showed meat being picked up off the floor to continue in the process. 


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#3 Setanta

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 04:50 PM

I don't think you are going to have many people recommend washing meat that has fallen to the floor. Perhaps you can look at devoting more people to that station or getting the chunks of meat cut smaller?

 

Best of Luck, that's a tough one!


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#4 stim

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 04:54 PM

I should clarify that we are not a RTE facility. I have heard of whole-bird poultry facilities washing birds that have hit the floor, but not sure about meat.


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#5 Ekivlen

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 05:40 PM

My rebuttal to those that are looking to save money by instituting a re-work program is that they are going to spend far more on finished product sampling than they would on disposing of a 60 portion that hits the floor. 


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#6 SQF1188

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Posted 26 August 2014 - 08:39 PM

Reworking meat that has fallen on the floor can be perfectly acceptable if done correctly and a great procedure is written. There are a few major things you have to consider and make sure that it is followed every time.

 

1) Make sure you have responsible management individuals in charge of reworking that's done for product that falls on the floor. This shouldn't be a regular production employee unless they've been trained and you've verified them performing the procedure.

 

2) Designate equipment only for rework of product that has fallen on the floor and make sure it is cleaned and sanitized after every use. (Yellow handled knives or some way to distinguish equipment) Make sure employee clothes/frocks/gloves are changed after handling product.

 

3) Designate an area where the product is taken in a timely manner and make sure it's not in contact with other pieces of meat. (Make sure this area is sanitized after every use also)

 

4) Have a combination of water and an organic acid/lactic acid available to sanitize the meat. The outer layer should be trimmed, sanitized, rinsed, and visually inspected by management for release back to regular production.

 

5) If you're running product that needs to have it's identity preserved (i.e. Kosher/Halal/allergens) make sure you're able to distinguish and keep that identity or downgrade product if you must.

 

There's a lot to consider when trying to come up with a rework policy for meat that's fallen on the floor but if it's done correctly it's a safe process and I've seen it done in front of USDA and SQF Auditors alike. Follow your procedures and do some validation by testing meat after following procedures. A simple swab test sent out to a lab on different pieces should be fine. While you are validating it's best to designate your meat inedible or for lethality/cooking only. 


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#7 cazyncymru

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 07:53 AM

I would read Tony C's blog regarding 2 Sisters, and gauge from that the public perception regarding reworking meat falling on the floor

 

Caz x


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#8 Bill Cusack

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 07:52 PM

I can understand both sides of this, but in the end reworking dropped meat is a good idea for one reason (immediate cost) and a bad idea for a lot of reasons (including long term cost, reputation, risk management, staff pride) which outweighs the one.  

 

Since cost is important, better to turn the problem on its head and make it a win/win by having plant leaders pose the challenge as:

 

"Dropped meat costs us money - every way you look at it.  How do we eliminate or make insignificant the amount of meat that falls on the floor"?


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#9 Snookie

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Posted 27 August 2014 - 09:18 PM

I can understand both sides of this, but in the end reworking dropped meat is a good idea for one reason (immediate cost) and a bad idea for a lot of reasons (including long term cost, reputation, risk management, staff pride) which outweighs the one.  

 

Since cost is important, better to turn the problem on its head and make it a win/win by having plant leaders pose the challenge as:

 

"Dropped meat costs us money - every way you look at it.  How do we eliminate or make insignificant the amount of meat that falls on the floor"?

 

Excellent Point! :thumbup:


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#10 jacq

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Posted 28 August 2014 - 11:50 AM

The Food Standards Agency - Meat Industry Guide- states:

 

''Dropped meat policy - procedures depend on the size of the piece of meat and the extent and nature of any possible contamination. Large pieces of red meat or in-skin poultry carcases should be trimmed immediately of visible contamination before processing is resumed. Pieces that are not suitable for trimming should be disposed of as unfit food''


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#11 Mr. Incognito

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Posted 28 August 2014 - 12:10 PM

I was going to say something along the same line as Jacquip :welcome: to IFSQN BTW.

 

I don't know anything about meat production so take what I say as someone who understand food safety and not meat.  I know meat typically is understood to have a bacterial load... which is why you are supposed to cook it properly however increasing the bacterial load by not being careful / handing product properly can be seen as adulteration.  "Well this product can have salmonella in it so why wash my hands" or whatnot.  Of course people would freak if they found out the meat their steak is cut from had fallen on the floor before it was their steak... people would freak out about a lot of things that happen in food manufacturing.


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#12 SQF1188

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Posted 28 August 2014 - 02:28 PM

Like I said before this is common practice and is done in front of USDA inspectors, all different auditors, and plant visitors. The last place I worked had separate sinks labeled "Product Wash" sinks.


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#13 stim

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Posted 28 August 2014 - 02:32 PM

Yes dbloomstrand, I have heard of this being ok with inspectors before.

 

Validation is something that we may have to look into depending on the amount of meat that is being lost.


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#14 RuiM

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Posted 02 September 2014 - 05:44 PM

Hello All,

 

Today we had a question come up about returning meat that has been dropped on the floor back into production. We do not have a procedure for cleaning meat off with water and returning it, but it seems as though production has been pushing for this to happen to save dollars. They are willing to put pieces of fallen meat into inedible bins, but when it comes to dropping a 60lb block they are more hesitant.

 

Does anyone have a policy for dropped meat that involves not placing it in inedible automatically? If so how did you validate the risk?

 

Thanks!

 

 

I´m very suspicious about this issue. If the basis of Food Safety/Hygiene is about PREVENTION, I believe that "returning meat that has been dropped on the floor" is the opposite way, and is not preventive! Even if we believe that everything is ok, is not in accordance with good practices.

I will feel unconfortable if my supplier could give me meat that already hit the floor... Sure, everything is ok, but untill when?
Tricky question, but I prefer reject the product (all) and have 100% sure my product is safe.

IMO, "Save money" never should be used as a reason for food safety negligence.


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#15 jtrue

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Posted 12 September 2014 - 02:47 PM

The below instructions come straight from a USDA training document on Sanitation Standard Operating Procedures
 
Reconditioning Product
Although there is no regulatory requirement, establishments may have a 
procedure in its Sanitation SOPs for reconditioning product that incidentally 
comes in contact with a non-food contact surface (such as the floor). The 
procedure usually consists of the following steps; an establishment employee will 
remove product from the floor in a timely manner, trim contaminants from the 
surface area, wash the product at a product wash station, and inspect it before 
returning it to production. This procedure is used for occasional instances of 
product contamination. If the establishment is following its written procedures and 
monitoring these procedures, the establishment would not be required to take 
corrective action that meets the requirements of §416.15 every time product falls 
on the floor. If the establishment does not have a reconditioning procedure in its 
Sanitation SOP, it would be required to take and document corrective actions 
that meet the requirements of §416.15 each time product falls on the floor.

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#16 R. U. Cereus

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Posted 12 September 2014 - 05:20 PM

As a co-manufacturer in a non-RTE facility, I deal with several policies concerning food on the floor. One customer has a zero-tolerance policy for anything that is dropped or falls off the line. Whether it is a raw material (meat included) or a finished good completely sealed in packaging. Other customers have exceptions for finished products.


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#17 Charles.C

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Posted 12 September 2014 - 07:19 PM

As a co-manufacturer in a non-RTE facility, I deal with several policies concerning food on the floor. One customer has a zero-tolerance policy for anything that is dropped or falls off the line. Whether it is a raw material (meat included) or a finished good completely sealed in packaging. Other customers have exceptions for finished products.

Dear RUCereus,

 

Other customers have exceptions for finished products.

 

Assuming you meant that dropped product is considered acceptable for packing, I think you have some unusually flexible customers :smile:

 

Rgds / Charles.C.


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Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#18 R. U. Cereus

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Posted 15 September 2014 - 12:25 PM

Charles, you would be very, very surprised what goes on at my plant. We have some lines that were built by customers for their products only, so they get to make their own rules. It gets pretty complicated. Another widely varying practice is ingredient/raw material deviations. Some customers find it unacceptable, some will deviate for YEARS.


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#19 cazyncymru

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Posted 15 September 2014 - 01:56 PM

R U Cereus

 

I believe you!

 

Not so long ago we were asked to put in a sink for 1 retailer, but another retailer didn't like it and we had to put in a second sink to meet their requirements!! I kid you not. Both sinks co existed side by side for years.

 

Caz x


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