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As of January 31, 2023, there are 4839 open recommendations that still need to be addressed. 470 of these are priority recommendations, those that we believe warrant priority attention. Learn more about our priority designation on our Recommendations page.

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1 - 4 of 4 Recommendations, including 1 Priority Recommendations

Food Safety: USDA Should Take Further Action to Reduce Pathogens in Meat and Poultry Products

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1 Open Recommendations
Agency Recommendation Status
Food Safety and Inspection Service The Administrator of FSIS should include available information on the effectiveness of on-farm practices to reduce the level of pathogens as it finalizes its guidelines for controlling Salmonella in hogs. (Recommendation 3).
Open

According to FSIS officials, as of December 2022, the agency has conducted a literature review to identify pre-harvest (on-farm) best practices to reduce the level of Salmonella in market hogs and is revising its draft guidance titled "Compliance Guidelines for Controlling Salmonella in Market Hogs" to reflect the findings of new research. FSIS anticipates publishing the revised guidance in 2023. We will continue to monitor FSIS efforts to address this recommendation.

Workplace Safety and Health: Better Outreach, Collaboration, and Information Needed to Help Protect Workers at Meat and Poultry Plants

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1 Open Recommendations
Agency Recommendation Status
Food Safety and Inspection Service The FSIS Administrator should develop a process to regularly share the worker safety information it collects during its review of new chemicals with FSIS inspectors, plant management, OSHA, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). (Recommendation 6)
Open – Partially Addressed

FSIS stated that the agency already has a process for sharing chemical safety information with its inspectors. However, FSIS had not provided us with evidence that it had shared the worker safety information it collects related to new chemicals, such as safety information that is specific for dilution levels and conditions of use at plants, as noted in the report. In August 2022, FSIS told us that it had developed a process to share worker safety information with OSHA and NIOSH as part of new technology submissions. In addition, the updated worker safety MOU between FSIS and OSHA states that

Imported Seafood Safety: FDA and USDA Could Strengthen Efforts to Prevent Unsafe Drug Residues

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2 Open Recommendations
1 Priority
Agency Recommendation Status
Food Safety and Inspection Service
Priority Rec.
This is a priority recommendation.
The Administrator of FSIS should coordinate and communicate with FDA in developing drug residue testing methods and corresponding maximum residue levels for imported catfish that may also be applicable to other imported seafood. (Recommendation 5)
Open

According to FSIS officials in November 2020, the agency coordinates with FDA and EPA to carry out the National Residue Program, which entails testing FSIS-regulated products, including catfish, for chemical compounds of public health concern. In June 2021, FSIS officials indicated that it will continue to use its own test methods that meet the agency's pre-defined quality assurance criteria, are applicable to the particular commodity under its jurisdiction, and fit its business model. In February 2022, FSIS added that it does not have plans to work on a multi-residue method that both it and

Food Safety and Inspection Service The Administrator of FSIS should require as part of an equivalence determination that countries exporting catfish to the United States include in their residue monitoring plans the drugs of concern to FSIS and the corresponding maximum residue levels. (Recommendation 3)
Open

As of February 2022, FSIS had not acted on this recommendation. FSIS stated that it does not plan to set requirements for foreign countries' residue monitoring plans. FSIS maintains that as part of the FSIS equivalence program, a foreign country must demonstrate that it either employs the same measures as the United States, and many foreign countries take this approach, or that the measures that it employs, while different from those of the United States, provide an equivalent level of public health protection as those of this country. According to FSIS, its review of documents from the

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For questions about a specific recommendation, contact the person or office listed with the recommendation. For general information about recommendations, contact GAO's Audit Policy and Quality Assurance office at (202) 512-6100 or apqa@gao.gov.