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For use beginning 10/1/2020
This directive informs inspection program personnel (IPP) of the requirements, verification activities, and enforcement actions for ensuring that the handling and slaughter of livestock, including disabled livestock and livestock slaughtered by religious ritual methods, is humane. This directive provides instructions to IPP (e.g., public health veterinarian (PHV), Food Safety Specialists (FSS)) for conducting humane handling activities randomly throughout their tour of duty and provides instructions to IPP, in establishments that assert that they have put in place a systematic approach, on how to assess whether that approach is robust. PHVs are to no longer perform a monthly verification task (Verification of a Robust Systematic Approach) to determine whether an establishment maintains a robust systematic approach for humane handling as they are expected to make this assessment on an ongoing basis and inform the establishment of any status change in this regard. FSIS has modified the definition of egregious inhumane treatment and instructs IPP to document egregious inhumane treatment on a noncompliance record (NR) instead of a memorandum of interview (MOI). This revision also updates instructions for entering humane handling verification data into the Public Health Information System (PHIS).
In addition, per 6VSA 3306, establishments are currently required to submit a written humane handling plan to the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets upon application for initial or renewal licensing. Establishments may choose to develop and implement a robust systematic approach for the humane handling of animals. On September 9, 2004, FSIS published a notice in the Federal Register (54 Fed. Reg. 54625) entitled “Humane Handling and Slaughter Requirements and the Merits of a Systematic Approach To Meet Such Requirements.” This Federal Register Notice 2 details the background on the humane handling and slaughter statutes issued by Congress and regulation of humane handling by FSIS. It also details steps industry should take to assure effective compliance with the Acts and regulations.
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