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Notice

Retail Exemptions Adjusted Dollar Limitations

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing the dollar limitations on the amount of meat and meat food products, poultry, and poultry products that a retail store can sell to hotels, restaurants, and similar institutions without disqualifying itself for exemption from Federal inspection requirements. In accordance with FSIS's regulations, for calendar year 2015, the dollar limitation for meat and meat food products is being increased from $70,400 to $76,900 and for poultry products from $57,100 to $58,200. FSIS is changing the dollar limitations from calendar year 2014 to reflect price changes for these products, as evidenced by the Consumer Price Index.

DATES:

Effective Date: April 23, 2015.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Gina Kouba, Issuances Staff, Office of Policy and Program Development, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 6067, South Building, Washington, DC 20250; (202) 690-6510.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

The Federal Meat Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) and the Poultry Products Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 451 et seq.) provide a comprehensive statutory framework to ensure that meat, meat food products, poultry, and poultry products prepared for commerce are wholesome, not adulterated, and properly labeled and packaged. Statutory provisions requiring inspection of the preparation or processing of meat, meat food, poultry, and poultry products do not apply to operations of types traditionally and usually conducted at retail stores and restaurants when those operations are conducted at any retail store or restaurant or similar retail-type establishment for sale in normal retail quantities (21 U.S.C. 661(c)(2) and 454(c)(2)). FSIS's regulations (9 CFR 303.1(d) and 381.10(d)) elaborate on the conditions under which inspection requirements do not apply to retail operations involving the preparation of meat and meat food, and processing of poultry and poultry products.

Sales to Hotels, Restaurants, and Similar Institutions

Under these regulations, sales to hotels, restaurants, and similar institutions (other than household consumers) disqualify a retail store from exemption if the product sales exceed either of two maximum limits: 25 percent of the dollar value of total product sales or the calendar year dollar limitation set by the Administrator. The dollar limitation is adjusted automatically during the first quarter of the year if the Consumer Price Index (CPI), published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, shows an increase or decrease of more than $500 in the price of the same volume of product for the previous year. FSIS publishes a notice of the adjusted dollar limitations in the Federal Register. (See 9 CFR 303.1(d)(2)(iii)(b) and 381.10(d)(2)(iii)(b).)

The CPI for 2014 reveals an annual average price increase for meat and meat food products at 9.24 percent and for poultry products at 1.97 percent. When rounded to the nearest $100, the dollar limitation for meat and meat food products increased by $6,500 and the dollar limitation for poultry products increased by $1,100. Because the dollar limitation of meat and meat food products and poultry products increased by more than $500, FSIS is increasing the dollar limitation on sales to hotels, restaurants, and similar institutions to $76,900 for meat and meat food products and to $58,200 for poultry products for calendar year 2015, in accordance with 9 CFR 303.1(d)(2)(iii)(b) and 381.10(d)(2)(iii)(b).

Additional Public Notification

FSIS Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy development is important. Consequently, FSIS will announce this Federal Register publication on-line through the FSIS Web page located at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/​federal-register.

FSIS will also make copies of this publication available through the FSIS Constituent Update, which is used to provide information regarding FSIS policies, procedures, regulations, Federal Register notices, FSIS public meetings, 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 groups, consumer interest groups, health professionals, and other individuals who have asked to be included. The Update is also available on the FSIS Web page. In addition, FSIS offers an electronic 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/​subscribe. 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 accounts.

USDA Non-Discrimination Statement

No agency, officer, or employee of the USDA shall, on the grounds of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, or political beliefs, exclude from participation in, deny the benefits of, or subject to discrimination any person in the United States under any program or activity conducted by the USDA.

How to File a Complaint of Discrimination

To file a complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, which may be accessed online at http://www.ocio.usda.gov/​sites/​default/​files/​docs/​2012/​Complain_​combined_​6_​8_​12.pdf, or write a letter signed by you or your authorized representative.

Send your completed complaint form or letter to USDA by mail, fax, or email:

Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-9410.Start Printed Page 15550

Fax: (202) 690-7442.

Email: program.intake@usda.gov.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.), should contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

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Done, at Washington, DC on: March 16, 2015.

Alfred V. Almanza,

Acting Administrator.

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[FR Doc. 2015-06641 Filed 3-23-15; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-DM-P