The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) adopted on 3 October 2011 a Scientific Opinion on the public health hazards to be covered by inspection of meat (swine), which concluded that the currently required palpations and incisions in post-mortem inspection, involve a risk of cross contamination with bacterial hazards.
EFSA also concluded that palpation or incisions used in current post-mortem inspection should be omitted in pigs subjected to routine slaughter, because the risk of microbial cross-contamination is higher than the risk associated with potentially reduced detection of conditions targeted by those techniques. The use of those manual techniques during post-mortem inspection should be limited to suspect pigs identified, inter alia, through post-mortem visual detection of relevant abnormalities.
Where the epidemiological or other data from the holding of provenance of the animals, the food chain information or the findings of ante-mortem inspection or post-mortem visual detection of relevant abnormalities indicate possible risks to public health, animal health or animal welfare, the official veterinarian should have the possibility to decide which palpations and incisions must be carried out during post-mortem inspection in order to decide if the meat is fit for human consumption.
In view of the EFSA Opinion, it is appropriate to amend the specific requirements for the post-mortem inspection of domestic swine set out in Part B of Chapter IV of Section IV of Annex I to Regulation (EC) No 854/2004, this is why the Commission has published Regulation (EU) Nº 219/2014 of 7 March 2014 amending Annex I to Regulation (EC) No 854/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council as regards the specific requirements for post-mortem inspection of domestic swine.
Saturday March 8, 2014/ OJEU/ European Union.