The new trichinae certification program could lead to increased pork exports, according to the National Pork Producers Council.
USDA has issued a final rule for implementing a program in which pork producers can certify that their product is free of trichinae, according to the NPPC which worked to get the program included in the 2008 farm bill.
NPPC contends that a national voluntary certification program will work to confirm that cases of Trichinella spiralis in the U.S. commercial herd are "extraordinarily rare" while allaying the fears of trading partners, including the European Union, Russia, Chile and Singapore. Those countries require expensive testing for trichinae of all fresh and chilled pork imports from the United States.
"The trichinae certification program will give our trading partners evidence of what USDA and every U.S. pork producer has known for years — trichinae is not a problem in U.S. pork," NPPC President Bryan Black said in a news release. "We expect this program to expand U.S. pork exports." The program includes on-farm production practices that mitigate the negligible risks of exposure to Trichinella spiralis.
The farm bill includes authorization of $1.5 million per year for the program over five years.