Annex B: Trichinella spiralis Control Options in Pork, Trichinella Control Log and Attestation of Freezing

This page is part of the Guidance Document Repository (GDR).

Looking for related documents?
Search for related documents in the Guidance Document Repository

B.1 General requirements and information

All smokehouses or other cooking devices, freezers, and any other room/device, used for the destruction of Trichinella in pork or pork products shall be equipped with accurate automatic devices that continuously record time/ temperature.

Time/temperature recorders and thermometers used in registered establishments shall be tested for accuracy against a known accurate standard thermometer and clock. Such tests shall be performed just prior to installation and at least once a year thereafter or more frequently as may be necessary to ensure their accuracy. A dated record of such tests shall be kept, along with the responsible person, and the necessary information on deviations and appropriate corrective actions.

For freezing, heating and curing methods used to ensure the destruction of viable Trichinella in striated pork muscle or meat product containing striated pork muscle, the operator is responsible for keeping current and accurate records which document all parameters required for process control (e.g. lot identification, time/temperature records, % salt, casing diameter, etc.), the critical limits which must be respected as well as the actual measurements confirming that the critical limits were met and, when a process deviation has occurred, the corrective action taken.

The controls for the freezing of product to ensure the destruction of Trichinella are described under section B.3 of this annex.

All operator control records shall be verified on a regular basis and kept at the establishment for at least one year or for the duration of the shelf life of the product if the latter is greater than one year. Records shall be available to the inspector upon request.

The inspector is responsible to maintain a freezing log book in addition to the operator's control records.

B.2 Heating

All parts of the pork muscle tissue shall be heated according to one of the time/temperature combinations listed in Table B.2

Table B.2
Thermal treatments to ensure the destruction of Trichinella in Pork Meat
Minimal Internal Temperature (°C) Minimum time Table Note 1
49 21 hrs.
50 9.5 hrs.
52 4.5 hrs.
53 2.0 hrs.
54 1.0 hr.
55 30 min.
56 15 min.
57 6 min.
58 3 min.
59 2 min.
60 1 min. Table Note 2
62 1 min. Table Note 2
63 Instant Table Note 2

Table Notes

Table Note 1

The time to raise internal product temperature from15°C to 49°C shall not exceed 2 hours unless the product is cured or fermented.

Return to table note 1  referrer

Table note 2

Time, when in combination with internal product temperatures of 59°C to 62°C, does not need to be monitored if the product's minimum thickness exceeds 5.1 cm and refrigeration of the product does not begin within 5 minutes of attaining 59°C.

Return to table note 2  referrer

The operator shall use procedures which ensure the proper heating of all parts of the product. It is important that each piece of sausage, ham, and other product treated by heating in water be kept entirely submerged throughout the heating period; and that the largest pieces in a lot, the innermost links of bunched sausage or other massed articles, and those pieces placed in the coolest part of a heating cabinet, compartment or cooking vat be included in the temperature test.

Temperature monitoring shall therefore be conducted at the center of the largest pieces and at the coldest spot of the vat, heating cabinet or smokehouse. The operator shall keep records of their monitoring procedures including results, process deviations and corrective actions. Both the operators monitoring procedures and records should be routinely verified by the inspector as per the Compliance Verification System (CVS) program.

B.3 Freezing

Freezers or floor to ceiling cages used for the destruction of Trichinella shall be kept locked by the Inspector-in-Charge to ensure that product is not tampered with.

The keeping of a freezing log book is the inspectors's responsibility. Before product can be put in or be removed from the locked freezing area, the log book (refer to section B.6 of this annex) shall be completed by the inspector. After having checked that the lot has met critical limits, the inspector will sign the log book and allow product to be removed from the freezing area.

After completion of the prescribed freezing, boxed product shall be stamped on the main panel of each box "Frozen for the control of Trichinella". The letters of the stamp shall be of a minimum of 5 mm. These stamps shall be kept under the inspector's control at all times. In the case where the treated product is intended for export, the inspector will complete the attestation of freezing (refer to section B.7 of this annex) and will send the completed form with the CFIA/ACIA 1454 to the veterinarian who will sign the export documents.

Highlights of the various approved freezing methods for destroying trichinae

  • In methods #1 and #2, room temperature is controlled for the purposes of establishing that the process for destroying trichinae is compliant. Products are put in the freezer after chilling (i.e., once they have reached a temperature no higher than 4°Cwithout being frozen). Owing to these two factors, spacers must be used. The boxes may not be shrink-wrapped.
  • In method #3, products are already frozen when the treatment for destroying trichinae begins. The entire treatment needs to be monitored using a properly installed thermocouple. Spacers are not required in this method and the boxes may be shrink-wrapped.
  • Method #4 uses both types of monitoring (i.e., first the thermocouple, then room temperature) to ensure the destruction of trichinae. Spacers are not required and the boxes may be shrink-wrapped.
  • Method #5 has been developed for meat products frozen in bulk containers according to a specific protocol; the trichinae destruction treatment uses the time/temperature combinations adopted in method #3. Given the size of the containers, spacers cannot be used. Boxes may not be shrink-wrapped.

Freezing Method #1:

When this method is used, pork striated muscle or products containing pork striated muscle tissue, after preparatory chilling to a temperature of 4°C or less, shall be kept frozen at the indicated temperature for an uninterrupted length of time equal or longer to the one specified in the following table.

Table B.3.1
Freezing method #1 to ensure the destruction of Trichinella (Temperature -25°C)
Group Time
Group 1
pork products with maximum thickness of 25 cm
10 days
Group 2
pork products with thickness between 25 - 50 cm
20 days

Insulating packaging material shall be removed prior to the commencement of the freezing process. Boxes shall be stacked in such a way as to permit air circulation and to permit product to reach the freezing room temperature as quickly as possible (spacers required and no shrink wrap).

Freezing time calculation shall begin only from the moment that the freezer's temperature reaches the specified value. In cases where the freezer temperature exceeds the specified maximum temperature indicated in the freezing schedule, the operator shall either use a different time-temperature schedule which allows for the higher temperature or shall restart the counting of the number of uninterrupted freezing days from the moment that the freezer temperature returns below the specified maximum.

Freezing method # 2:

When this method is used, pork muscle or products containing pork muscle tissue, after preparatory chilling to a temperature of 4°C or less, shall be kept frozen at the indicated temperature for an uninterrupted length of time equal or longer to the one specified in Table B.3.2.

Insulating packaging material shall be removed prior to the commencement of the freezing process. Boxes shall be stacked in such a way as to permit air circulation and to permit product to reach the freezing room temperature as quickly as possible (spacers required and no shrink wrap).

Freezing time calculation shall begin only from the moment that the freezer's temperature reaches the specified value. In cases where the freezer temperature exceeds the specified maximum temperature indicated in the freezing schedule, the operator shall either use a different time-temperature schedule which allows for the higher temperature or shall restart the counting of the number of uninterrupted freezing days from the moment that the freezer temperature returns below the specified maximum.

Table B.3.2
Freezing Method # 2 to Ensure Destruction of Trichinella
Freezer Temperature (°C) Min. # of Days
(uninterrupted)
Group 1
Min. # of Days
(uninterrupted)
Group 2
-15 20 30
-23 10 -
-25 - 20
-29 6 12

Group 1: 15 cm thickness or less
Group 2: 15 to 50 cm thickness

In case of doubts, the documented case should be submitted to the Chief, Meat Processing, Meat Programs Division (MPD).

Freezing Method # 3:

In lieu of the methods prescribed in Freezing Method # 1 and Freezing Method # 2 above, products containing pork striated muscle may be treated by means of commercial freeze drying or controlled freezing.

When using this method # 3, there is no obligation to use spacers and the use of shrink wrap around pallets is acceptable.

Product brought in already frozen shall be treated in accordance with one of the time/product internal temperature combinations specified in Table B.3.3. For each lot, the internal temperature is to be monitored by a thermocouple placed in the CENTRE of the thickest piece of meat and in the warmest location of the freezer (not close to cooling equipment). The temperature shall be measured with properly calibrated thermoelectric instruments (recording thermometers) and continuously recorded. The charts shall include pertinent information and, at least, the lot number, its description, the number of boxes, date in, date out, and the signature of the inspector.

Table B.3.3
Freezing Method # 3 to Ensure Destruction of Trichinella
Product Internal Temperature (°C) Minimum Time (hours)
-18.00 106
-21.00 82
-23.50 63
-26.00 48
-29.00 35
-32.00 22
-35.00 8
-37.00 ½

Temperature, when measured in degrees Celsius, shall be measured to the next lowest tenth of a degree Celsius or, in the case of temperature measuring devices unable to attain such a degree of accuracy, to the next lowest degree Celsius. For example, if a thermometer is not accurate enough to read -23.5°C, the meat shall be frozen to -24°C.

Freezing method # 4:

For methods # 1 and # 2, the control of the freezing temperature is accomplished by monitoring the freezer's ambient temperature. For method # 3, the same control is exerted through the use of a thermocouple in the centre of the warmest piece of meat.

A fourth method has been found acceptable. This method is based on both types of controls to ensure the destruction of trichina.

When using this method # 4, there is no obligation to use spacers and the use of shrink wrap around pallets is acceptable.

This method is done in two steps.

Step 1:

The purpose of this first step is to ensure that the temperature of all products of the lot to be treated has attained a temperature equilibrium with the freezer temperature. For each lot, the internal temperature is to be monitored by a thermocouple placed in the CENTRE of the thickest piece of meat and in the warmest location of the freezer (not close to cooling equipment). For doing so, as soon as the product is brought into the freezer, a thermocouple is placed at the centre of the warmest box of the lot. This box is then placed at the centre of the largest pallet. The temperature shall then be measured with properly calibrated thermoelectric instruments (recording thermometers) and continuously recorded until product temperature at the centre of this box is the same as the freezer's ambient temperature.

Step 2:

At this time, the thermocouple may be removed. The freezing time calculation may begin. The treated products shall be kept frozen at the indicated temperature for an uninterrupted length of time equal or longer to the one specified in Table B.3.1 or B.3.2.

For each lot treated, the operator shall keep the charts of the two steps to clearly demonstrate the control that is exerted. Records for the two steps shall be kept on file for each lot. The charts shall include all pertinent information and, at least, the lot number, its description, the number of boxes, date in, date out, the freezing method used and the signature of the inspector. In any case, the official log book shall be completed.

Freezing method # 5

This method is based on the protocol for freezing meat products in bulk containers (refer to Annex P, Chapter 4) and Table B.3.3. It applies only to big cuts of meat in bulk containers (e.g., a ham with bone) and has two steps.

Step 1:

The first step consists in ensuring that all refrigerated products that will be put in bulk containers will reach a temperature of -18°C or lower, according to a protocol that has been validated and approved by the CFIA.

From the outset of the freezing process, core temperature must be monitored for each lot to be treated using a thermocouple inserted in the MIDDLE of the biggest cut of meat located in the warmest part of the freezer (not close to a refrigeration unit). Temperature must be recorded on a continuous basis using properly calibrated thermoelectric instruments (recording thermometers).

A protocol must be submitted, validated and approved in compliance with Annex P of this chapter.

Step 2:

Freezing time for the treatment to destroy trichinae starts now. Treated products must be kept at the prescribed temperature without interruption for the amount of time specified in Table B.3.3.

The thermographs for each lot processed in each step should be preserved to clearly demonstrate that the proper controls have been applied. The temperature recordings for both steps must be kept, along with all pertinent information, notably the lot number, lot description, number of bulk containers, date of entry and removal, and the inspector's signature. The official logbook (section B.6 of this annex) must always be completed.

B.4 Curing:

Acceptable curing methods to ensure the destruction of Trichinella in striated pork muscle and meat products containing striated pork muscle are provided in Annex A of this chapter.

B.5 Other Processes:

Subject to approval by the Director, Meat Programs Division, treatment processes for the destruction of infective Trichinella in pork striated muscle and meat products containing pork striated muscle, other than those identified in this Annex, may be used. Proposed methods must be demonstrated to the satisfaction of the Director to be safe and to be verifiable by inspection staff. Data must be collected for assessment according to an experimental protocol which has been previously reviewed and accepted by the Director.

B.6 Trichinella Control Log

PDF (19 kb)

Click on image for larger view
Trichinella Control Log

Trichinella Control Log

This image shows the Trichinella Control Log. These must be indicated:

Establishment number:

Freezer room/cage number:

Page number:

For every Line Number these fields must be filled out:

Lot Number

Product Name

Number Of Boxes In Lot

Slaughter Establishment Numbers

Cut Up Establishment Numbers

Beginning Of Freezing Treatment (Year/Month/Day)

End Of Freezing Treatment (Year/Month/Day)

Time/Temperature Regime Used (Specify)

Thermo-Graph Chart Reviewed (Requirements Met) Yes/No

Number Of Boxes Removed Date Of Removal (Year/Month/Day)

Number Of Boxes Remaining

Sub-Total (Boxes Remaining)

Carried To Line Number:

Export Certificate Number and Destination (Country)

Inspector Signature

B.7 Attestation of Freezing

PDF (33 kb)

Click on image for larger view
Attestation of Freezing

Attestation of Freezing

This image shows the Attestation of Freezing. It contains the following fields to fill out:

Date:

Name and Establishment number where product was frozen:

Product description:

Lot number:

Number of containers:

Lot weight:

Export Certificate number (if applicable):

Establishment number appearing on boxes:

I hereby certify that the above described product was frozen to destroy Trichinella using the following approved freezing method:

Method 1: Group, Temperature (degrees Celsius), Days

Method 2: Group, Temperature (degrees Celsius), Days

Method 3: Internal temperature (degrees Celsius), Hours

Method 4: Product Temperature at equilibrium with freezer's temperature (Yes/No), Method, Group, Temperature (degrees Celsius), Days

Inspector (Signature)

Inspector (Print)

Date modified: