Training Tools for FSMA Compliance

By Jessica Meisinger, Director of Education, Science, and Communication
Fats and Proteins Research Foundation

The National Renderers Association (NRA) is working to provide its members information needed to comply with the new Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). This law requires all facilities using a thermal processing step as a preventative control for biological hazards validate that this step is capable of significantly minimizing or preventing the hazard.

Facilities must also develop a food safety plan and train all employees on the importance of food safety. NRA has created various tools to help its members meet these new requirements, including white papers validating thermal destruction of Salmonella, a sample food safety plan, and an educational video to help train employees on their role in food safety.

White Papers
NRA has prepared “Thermal Validation Data for Rendering” white papers to provide data in order to validate processing parameters for preventative controls based on rendering cookers. This is a great cost savings for individual renderers over collecting thermal validation data at each rendering plant.

Three studies were funded by the Fats and Proteins Research Foundation (FPRF) in 2015/2016 to gather data on killing Salmonella in various raw materials commonly processed in rendering cookers and to generate a set of parameters that could be used to validate cooking operations.

The first of these thermal validation studies was conducted at Texas Tech University and examined the thermal parameters for raw beef. The second study was performed using raw poultry materials at Texas A&M University, while the third utilized used cooking oil and was conducted at Colorado State University. All three studies incorporated a heat-resistant strain of Salmonella into their inoculation cocktails to simulate a “worst case” scenario and calculated time and temperature parameters to achieve either a 5.0 or 7.0 log10 reduction. These reductions were selected because the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and/or United States Department of Agriculture have previously indicated they were legitimate end points to ensure safe food. It is assumed that FDA will accept the 5.0 log10 reduction. Dr. Ansen Pond, Darling Ingredients Inc. and chairman of NRA’s Animal Protein Producers Industry (APPI) Committee, assembled the white papers using results from the FPRF research.

NRA/FPRF members can contact NRA at (703) 683-0155 or e-mail Jessica Meisinger for copies of these studies as well as information on training opportunities for preventive control qualified individuals (PCQI) that are offered by APPI in the Rendering Code of Practice.

Sample Food Safety Plan
FSMA also requires each rendering plant develop a food safety plan with the oversight of a PCQI. A sample rendering food safety plan was created to show NRA members how such a plan might be completed. The sample plan contains examples of all necessary information covering biological, physical, and chemical hazards, including:

• A flow diagram to help companies visualize their plant’s process.
• Hazard analysis and risk-based preventative controls to incorporate each step of the process, the known or reasonably foreseeable animal food safety hazards, the severity and probability of the hazards, the risk assessment of each hazard, and a determination if the hazard necessitates a preventative control.
• A risk assessment chart graphing probability and severity of a given hazard.
• A preventative control decision tree to help determine what controls need to be planned out for each step or are not necessary.
• A chart showing all of this gathered information.

This sample plan should be used as a guide and not as a fill-in-the-blank template. Each plant is different, even those within the same company, and might have separate risks. PCQIs should know all the details that go into their food safety plans.

Training Video
APPI has created a new 10-minute video and training-related documents for animal food and Salmonella safety education to replace the popular instructive tools that APPI distributed for many years. This video and supporting material will also help renderers fulfill the FSMA requirement that all plant employees must be trained in basic food safety concepts.

The new training kit contains five items in digital format:

• A 10-minute video on animal food and Salmonella safety in English (MP4 file)
• A 10-minute video on animal food and Salmonella safety in Spanish (MP4 file)
• 10 English/Spanish posters in a printable format illustrating the 10 main points (files can be provided to sign printer of choice)
• A brief animal food and Salmonella safety manual in English (PDF)
• A brief animal food and Salmonella safety manual in Spanish (PDF)

The entire kit is available on a computer memory stick at a cost of $500 for APPI and NRA member companies and $750 for non-members. To order, contact Dara John at (660) 277-3469 or e-mail

April 2017 RENDER | back