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TITLE 25HEALTH SERVICES
PART 1DEPARTMENT OF STATE HEALTH SERVICES
CHAPTER 221MEAT SAFETY ASSURANCE
SUBCHAPTER BMEAT AND POULTRY INSPECTION
RULE §221.15Inspection of Alternate Source Food Animals

(a) Requirements. Specific requirements of this section shall be in addition to those required by the rules adopted for inspection of livestock, under the Texas Meat and Poultry Inspection Act, and federal regulations as listed in §221.11 of this title (relating to Federal Regulations on Meat and Poultry Inspection).

(b) Fees. Fees shall be assessed in one-half hour increments for inspection services, provided by a department inspector to a facility holding a grant of inspection, as specified in §221.12(d) of this title (relating to Meat and Poultry Inspection). Failure of a grant holder to promptly pay invoices will result in cessation of overtime inspection services. Inspection time includes, but is not limited to:

  (1) the inspector's time in the field during a hunt;

  (2) the inspector's time spent completing inspection records;

  (3) the inspector's time spent waiting for any purpose to facilitate the processor;

  (4) the inspector's time for travel between hunt sites; and

  (5) the inspector's time for travel from the inspector's official duty location to the field site and return.

(c) Sanitary dressing procedures. The following are general guidelines of sanitary dressing applicable to all species of livestock slaughtered.

  (1) The person performing slaughter operations must not permit any contamination of edible portions of the carcass with materials such as feces, urine, hair, ingesta, milk, bile, pathological tissues and exudates, and other filth. All controls of slaughter and dressing procedures must be aimed at accomplishing this purpose.

  (2) Slaughter operations must be conducted in a manner that precludes contamination, i.e., adequate separation of carcasses, parts, and viscera during dressing; routine cleaning and disinfection of certain equipment and hand tools; design and arrangement of equipment to prevent the contact of successive carcasses and parts; and appropriately located, functional lavatories and disinfection units.

  (3) In the event that contamination does occur, it must be handled promptly and in a manner that ensures adequate protection to the remaining product. Contamination with feces, milk, pus, or pathological tissue or exudate must be promptly removed by trimming. Removal must be complete. Enough tissue must be removed so only clean meat remains. Scraping with the edge or back of a knife, wiping with a cloth or towel, or the use of a water spray are unacceptable procedures for removal of this type of contamination.

(d) Exotic animal.

  (1) Sanitation. All slaughter operations, including field slaughter, are to be conducted in a way that precludes contamination. The following conditions, as a minimum, shall be met.

    (A) The slaughter facility or mobile slaughter unit shall be constructed of smooth and impervious material capable of being thoroughly cleaned and sanitized prior to commencing operations and must be so maintained.

    (B) Only potable water shall be used in conjunction with exotic animal slaughter procedures. Water from private water wells shall be tested for potability by an approved laboratory within six months prior to use. Water from portable water tanks shall be tested by an approved laboratory every six months to determine that potable water remains potable after being in the portable tanks. Results of such testing shall be made available to the TDH inspector.

    (C) Hot water at a temperature adequate to facilitate equipment and unit sanitization during pre-operational and operational sanitation procedures is required on the skinning/evisceration floor. A procedure utilizing chemical sanitization in lieu of hot water may be used.

    (D) Mobile as well as fixed slaughter units shall provide adequate measures to control flies, other insects, and dust.

    (E) Inedible by-products must be handled in a manner that does not create an insanitary condition or adulteration and ensures inedibles are not diverted to human food. When containers are used to remove inedibles from the premises, such containers shall be marked "INEDIBLE" in letters at least two inches high. An adequate amount of denaturant in accordance with 9 CFR §314.3 will be used on all products placed in the "INEDIBLE" containers.

  (2) Ante-mortem procedures.

    (A) The producer must certify by completing and signing form MSA-71, Microchip Certification and Drug Advisory For Alternate Food Animal Species, whether the animal(s) have been identified with a microchip device.

    (B) For mobile and field slaughter, once an animal has been shot, the animal will be bled as soon as possible in the field with a properly sanitized knife. The assigned inspector will examine and inspect each animal prior to its entry into the processing facility to assure that the animals being harvested appear to have been healthy and were killed by the harvester.

    (C) For field slaughter, environmental temperature may affect the time that may lapse before it is necessary to return to the mobile slaughter unit or processing facility for skinning and eviscerating. High environmental temperature may shorten the time lapse prior to dressing, as dressing must begin before the carcass becomes distended due to gas formation in the interstitial tissues or in the small intestine. The department inspector has the final decision in determining the actual time allowed between bleeding and skinning; however, a two and one half hour time lapse shall not be exceeded.

  (3) Post-mortem procedures.

    (A) The vehicle used for transporting the slaughtered exotic animals shall be clean prior to use and shall be cleaned as needed, during the operation.

    (B) Dressing procedures are to begin at the slaughter unit or facility as soon as practical after slaughter.

    (C) Heads from animals slaughtered by gunshot to the head shall not be used for food purposes. Such heads shall be denatured and placed into inedible containers.

    (D) In the event that an animal is shot in an area other than the head, the resulting wound area and/or bruised areas must be trimmed of all contamination.

    (E) The dressing of any animal whether it be the removal of a foot, head, or any part is strictly forbidden in any area other than inside the slaughter unit, regardless of the size of the animal. However, the removal of the antlers only is permitted prior to entering the slaughter facility.

  (4) Dressing procedures.

    (A) It is imperative that persons butchering an animal keep their hands as clean as possible; adequate facilities for washing hands must be readily accessible.

    (B) Skinning operations must be conducted in a sanitary manner.

    (C) As the pelt is removed, care must be taken to prevent contamination of the carcass by dirty hands, knife or pelt.

    (D) If a pelt puller is used in such a manner that the carcass is raised to a horizontal position, the carcasses of the female animals must be checked closely for urine leakage.

    (E) Heads must remain with the carcass until inspection is completed. Nasal and oral cavities should be flushed before heads are placed on inspection tables.

    (F) Overall washing of carcasses should be accomplished before any openings are made for inspection or evisceration; however, any feces, ingesta, or milk must be trimmed before washing. The washer should take care to prevent filling the rectum with water during washing operations.

    (G) The knife or other instrument used to open the breast must be disinfected after each use.

    (H) The bung is not to be dropped until washing is completed. After opening the pelvic area, the neck of the bladder and the dropped bung should be grasped firmly and held until they clear the body cavity.

    (I) Evisceration must be accomplished in a manner that precludes contamination of the carcass with contents from the bladder or intestine; viscera is to be placed in an inspection pan.

    (J) If intestines are to be saved, contamination should be prevented by stripping and/or tying between the large and small intestine before removing from the table and sending to the next station.

  (5) Processing. Processing of carcasses shall be conducted in a manner and location that complies with requirements for processing all livestock carcasses, including the provisions adopted under §221.11 of this title.

(e) Rabbits. See 9 CFR, Part 354, as adopted by §221.11 of this title.

(f) Migratory water fowl, game birds, squab. See 9 CFR, Part 362, as adopted by §221.11 of this title.

(g) Certified products for dogs, cats, and other carnivora. See 9 CFR, Part 355, as adopted by §221.11 of this title.


Source Note: The provisions of this §221.15 adopted to be effective June 21, 2000, 25 TexReg 5901; amended to be effective March 14, 2002, 27 TexReg 1801; amended to be effective August 28, 2003, 28 TexReg 6868; amended to be effective January 1, 2005, 29 TexReg 11979

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