Companies producing ready-to-eat meats such as hot dogs, chicken tenders, jerky, or other pre-cooked meat products are required to meet the lethality performance standards set by the FSIS, Food Safety & Inspection Service.
Lethality is a process that ensures a reduction of foodborne pathogens like salmonella. Lethality is done by log lethality, which refers to the relative number of microbes that are eliminated during a process. To assist companies in meeting the FSIS lethality requirements, FSIS has standard compliance guidelines, which are based upon the time/temperature requirements the FSIS has deemed safe for food distribution.
Many meat products must also maintain a relative humidity of 90% or above for at least 25% of the total cooking time, with a minimum of 1 hour to meet those guidelines. The relative humidity may be achieved by the use of steam injection, liquid immersion cooking, moisture impermeable bags, or sealed ovens capable of maintaining the required humidity.
During the cool-down phase of the cooking process, The FSIS advises the product’s maximum internal temperature should not remain between 130°F and 80°F for more than 1.5 hours nor between 80°F and 40°F for more than 5 hours.
To help monitor these methods to ensure companies are meeting the FSIS guidelines, companies use data loggers to record temperature and humidity levels. Data loggers are the most effective and efficient way to ensure the safety of consumers and that the FSIS lethality standards are met.
MadgeTech provides a variety of data loggers that offer reliability and precision for monitoring any meat process. Data loggers like the RFOT can provide real-time readings of temperature to ensure ideal FSIS standard levels are maintained. For assistance finding the best data logging system for your food processing needs, gives us a call at (603) 456-2011 or emails us at [email protected]