STC Number - 142

Zero tolerance for e-coli

Maintained by: China
Raised by: United States of America
Supported by:
First date raised: November 2002 G/SPS/R/28, paras. 87-88
Dates subsequently raised:
Number of times subsequently raised: 0
Relevant documents: G/TBT/N/CHN/6
Products covered: 02 Meat and edible meat offal
Primary subject keyword: Food safety
Keywords: Food safety; Human health; Risk assessment; Transparency
Status: Not reported
Date reported as resolved:

Extracts from SPS Committee meeting summary reports

The United States recognized the need for China to reduce bacterial contamination on raw meats and poultry products to the lowest achievable level but had two concerns related to this notification. The United States believed that the complete elimination of enteropathogenic bacteria in raw meats and poultry products was not achievable using existing technologies and practices and they were interested in more information related to the risk assessment that had been used as the basis for this zero tolerance. Experience in the United States had shown that carcasses of normal healthy birds and animals could still contain a variety of bacteria, including those of concern to China, but proper preparation and handling could eliminate health concerns. As the basis of China's notification appeared to be food safety and human health concerns, the United States requested that China also notify this proposed regulation under the SPS Agreement. China agreed to consult with the standardizing agency and take the necessary steps.