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Notice

Retail Exemptions Adjusted Dollar Limitations

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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 2018, the value for the dollar limitation for meat and meat food products remains unchanged at $75,700. For calendar year 2018, the value for the dollar limitation for poultry and poultry products also remains unchanged at $56,600. FSIS reviews the dollar limitations on a yearly basis and makes adjustments based on price changes for these products evidenced by the Consumer Price Index.

FSIS is currently considering the retail dollar limitations for Siluriformes fish and fish products. FSIS intends to propose a methodology for setting the dollar limitations for Siluriformes fish and fish products in a separate Federal Register Notice.

DATES:

Applicable Date: September 14, 2018.

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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:

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 processing of meat, meat food products, poultry, and poultry products do not apply to operations of types traditionally and usually conducted at retail stores and restaurants in regard to products for sale to consumers 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 requirements for inspection 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 for 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 2017 reveals an annual average price decrease for meat and meat food products at 0.583 percent and an annual average price increase for poultry and poultry products at 0.17 percent. When rounded to the nearest dollar, the dollar limitation for meat and meat food products decreased by $441 and the dollar limitation for poultry and poultry products increased by $96. In accordance with 9 CFR 303.1(d)(2)(iii)(b) and 381.10(d)(2)(iii)(b), because the dollar limitation of meat and meat food products and poultry and poultry products did not increase or decrease by more than $500, FSIS is making no adjustment in the dollar limitations on sales to hotels, restaurants, and similar institutions. The dollar limitation for meat and meat food products remains unchanged at $75,700 and the dollar limitation for poultry and poultry products remains unchanged at $56,600 for calendar year 2018.

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 Constituent 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.

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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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Paul Kiecker,

Acting Administrator.

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[FR Doc. 2018-17546 Filed 8-14-18; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-DM-P