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Notice

Notice of Request for Revision of an Approved Information Collection (Procedures for the Notification of New Technology and Requests for Waivers)

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCY:

Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Notice and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regulations, the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing its intention to request a revision of the approved information collection regarding the procedures for notifying the Agency about new technology and requests for waivers because the OMB approval will expire on April 30, 2017. Based on the latest available data, FSIS has increased its total annual burden estimate by 9,184 hours to account for in-plant trials, and monthly data collection and recordkeeping for establishments operating under a waiver.

DATES:

Submit comments on or before February 27, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

FSIS invites interested persons to submit comments on this information collection. Comments may be submitted by one of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: This Web site provides the ability to type short comments directly into the comment field on this Web page or attach a file for lengthier comments. Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions at that site for submitting comments.
  • Mail, including CD-ROMs, etc.: Send to Docket Clerk, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, Docket Clerk, Patriots Plaza 3, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Mailstop 3782, Room 8-163A, Washington, DC 20250-3700.
  • Hand- or courier-delivered submittals: Deliver to Patriots Plaza 3, 355 E Street SW., Room 8-163A, Washington, DC 20250-3700.

Instructions: All items submitted by mail or electronic mail must include the Agency name and docket number FSIS-2016-0028. Comments received in response to this docket will be made available for public inspection and posted without change, including any personal information, to http://www.regulations.gov.

Docket: For access to background documents or comments received, go to the FSIS Docket Room at Patriots Plaza 3, 355 E Street SW., Room 8-164, Washington, DC 20250-3700 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Gina Kouba, Office of Policy and Program Development, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 6065, South Building, Washington, DC 20250; (202) 720-5627.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Title: Procedures for the Notification of New Technology and Requests for Waivers.

OMB Number: 0583-0127.

Expiration Date of Approval: 4/30/2017.

Type of Request: Revision of an approved information collection.

Abstract: FSIS has been delegated the authority to exercise the functions of the Secretary as specified in the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601, et seq.), the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451, et Start Printed Page 95100seq.), and the Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA) (21 U.S.C. 1031, et seq.). These statutes provide that FSIS is to protect the public by verifying that meat, poultry, and egg products are safe, wholesome, not adulterated, and properly labeled and packaged.

FSIS is requesting a revision of the approved information collection regarding the procedures for notifying the Agency about new technology and requests for waivers because the OMB approval will expire on April 30, 2017. Based on the latest available data, FSIS has increased its total annual burden estimate by 9,184 hours to account for in-plant trials, and monthly data collection and recordkeeping for establishments operating under a waiver.

FSIS has established procedures for notifying the Agency of any new technology intended for use in official meat and poultry establishments and egg products plants (68 FR 6873). To follow the procedures, establishments, plants, and firms that manufacture and sell technology to official establishments and plants notify the Agency by submitting documents describing the operation and purpose of the new technology. The documents should explain why the new technology will not (1) adversely affect the safety of the product, (2) jeopardize the safety of Federal inspection personnel, (3) interfere with inspection procedures, or (4) require a waiver of any Agency regulation. If use of the new technology will require a waiver of any Agency regulation, the notice should identify the regulation and explain why a waiver would be appropriate (9 CFR 303.2). If the new technology could affect FSIS regulations, product safety, inspection procedures, or the safety of inspection program personnel, the establishment or plant would need to submit a written protocol for an in-plant trial as part of a pre-use review. The submitter of a written protocol should provide data to the Agency throughout the duration of the in-plant trial.

FSIS has made the following estimates based upon an information collection assessment:

Estimate of Burden: FSIS estimates that it will take respondents an average of 8 hours to complete a notification of intent to use new technology if no in-plant trial is necessary. If an in-plant trial is necessary, FSIS estimates that it will take an average of 80 hours to develop a protocol and an average of 80 additional hours to collect data and keep records during the in-plant trial. FSIS estimates it will take respondents an average of 120 hours to collect data and conduct recordkeeping under a waiver.

Respondents: Official meat and poultry establishments and egg product plants; firms that manufacture or sell technology to official establishments and plants.

Estimated Number of Respondents: 75 respondents will submit notifications of intent to use new technology. 50 respondents will develop a protocol for and conduct an in-plant trial. 50 respondents will collect data and conduct recordkeeping for the duration of the in-plant trial. 35 respondents will collect data and conduct recordkeeping under the waiver.

Estimated Number of Annual Responses per Respondent: 1.

Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 12,800 hours.

Copies of this information collection assessment can be obtained from Gina Kouba, Office of Policy and Program Development, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA, 1400 Independence SW., 6065, South Building, Washington, DC 20250; (202) 720-5627.

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of FSIS's functions, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of FSIS's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques, or other forms of information technology. Comments may be sent to both FSIS, at the addresses provided above, and the Desk Officer for Agriculture, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, DC 20253.

Responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

Additional Public Notification

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 also will 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 our constituents and stakeholders. The Update is available on the FSIS Web page. Through the Web page, FSIS is able to provide information to a much broader, more diverse audience. In addition, FSIS offers an email 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, 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, 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 December 21, 2016.

Alfred V. Almanza,

Acting Administrator.

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[FR Doc. 2016-31252 Filed 12-23-16; 8:45 am]

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