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Food Safety Audits, Plant Characteristics, and Food Safety Technology Use in Meat and Poultry Plants

  • Ollinger, Michael
  • Muth, Mary K.
  • Karns, Shawn A.
  • Choice, Zanethia
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    Food safety technology can increase a company’s capacity to prevent a foodborne contamination. A food safety audit—a quality control tool in which an auditor observes whether a plant’s processing practices and technologies are compatible with good food safety practices—can indicate how effectively food safety technology is being used. Fast food restaurants, grocery stores, and other major customers of meat and poultry processing plants conduct their own audits or hire auditors to assess the soundness of a plant’s processing operation. Meat and poultry plants can also audit themselves as a way to help maintain process control. In this report, we document the extent of food safety audits in meat and poultry processing plants. We also examine the associations between the use of audits and plant size, firm structure, and food safety technology use. Results show that larger plants, plants subject to food safety audits, and plants that are part of a multiplant firm use more food safety technology than other plants. Plants subject to both plant-hired and customer-hired audits had greater technology use than single (plant- or customer-hired) audit plants.

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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/117989
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    Paper provided by United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service in its series Economic Information Bulletin with number 117989.

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    Date of creation: Oct 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:ags:uersib:117989
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    1. Michael R. Thomsen & Andrew M. McKenzie, 2001. "Market Incentives for Safe Foods: An Examination of Shareholder Losses from Meat and Poultry Recalls," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 83(3), pages 526-538.
    2. Ollinger, Michael & Moore, Danna L. & Chandran, Ram, 2004. "Meat And Poultry Plants' Food Safety Investments: Survey Findings," Technical Bulletins 33559, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    3. Golan, Elise H. & Roberts, Tanya & Salay, Elisabete & Caswell, Julie A. & Ollinger, Michael & Moore, Danna L., 2004. "Food Safety Innovation In The United States: Evidence From The Meat Industry," Agricultural Economics Reports 34083, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    4. Ollinger, Michael & Moore, Danna L., 2009. "The Interplay of Regulation and Marketing Incentives in Providing Food Safety," Economic Research Report 55837, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    5. Anonymous & Jensen, Helen H. & Unnevehr, Laurian J., 1995. "Tracking Foodborne Pathogens from Farm to Table: Data Needs to Evaluate Control Options," Miscellaneous Publications 33549, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    6. Nicholas E. Piggott & Thomas L. Marsh, 2004. "Does Food Safety Information Impact U.S. Meat Demand?," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 86(1), pages 154-174.
    7. Ollinger, Michael & Mueller, Valerie, 2003. "Managing For Safer Food: The Economics Of Sanitation And Process Controls In Meat And Poultry Plants," Agricultural Economics Reports 33975, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
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