New Regs for Minced Meat Suppliers Selling to Caterers Offering Rare Burgers

1 March, 2017

From 1 March 2017, The FSA has created and published a list of establishments approved to supply minced meat and meat preparations which intended to be eaten less than thoroughly cooked e.g. rare burgers.

There are now specific requirements for establishments supplying minced meat and/or meat preparations intended to be eaten less than thoroughly cooked.

This is intended to help catering establishments to identify approved producers of minced meat or meat products which are suitable for use in the production of minced meat items which are not intended to be less than thoroughly cooked - in other words those which are not cooked to “log6.”Log 6 refers to then number of bacteria left after thorough cooking, designed to reduce them to ‘safe’ levels.

Under the Food Standards Agency guidelines, https://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/beef-burger-advice-industry.pdf caterers selling less well-cooked burgers need to carry out extensive checks to ensure that their supplier is satisfactory. Minimal cooking means that the Caterer has to take additional measures to reduce bacteria during the early stages of the production chain e.g. at the abattoir and meat supplier stage as it doesn’t happen in the kitchen. This means looking at the supply chain.

The new supplier approval system now means that they can use the approved supplier on the FSA list, published on the FSA website.

At the time of writing, only three plants have been approved.

https://www.food.gov.uk/sites/default/files/lttc_meatpreps_mincedmeat_2.xlsx

However, it is important to note that caterers must still follow many other requirements in the guidance if they wish to serve burgers that are not cooked to achieve a “6-log10” reduction in pathogens. This includes letting your local authority Environmental Health Officer know that you are doing this.

Those who are cooking to achieve a “6-log10” reduction in pathogens do not need to take any action – just continue using these time and temperature combinations:

75 °C for 30 seconds

70 °C for 2 minutes

65 °C for 13.6 minutes

60 °C for 93 minutes

This requirement will be applicable in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and will come into force with effect from 1 March 2017. Different regulations apply in Scotland, as only log 6 burgers are permitted there.

The BHA has produced a Q&A on cooking rare burgers. Please read this for more information:http://www.bha.org.uk/bha_news/q-a-on-medium-and-rare-burgers/

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