Foreign governments often require meat and poultry products destined for export to their country to be tested for chemical residues, microorganisms, and/or parasites and they require the US government to oversee the product testing and verify compliance. The AMS Laboratory Approval Service (LAS) plays a role in export verification by ensuring the testing of products offered for export certification by the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is conducted by qualified and approved laboratories. LAS collaborates with the Food Safety Inspection Services (FSIS), the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS), and the meat and poultry industries to administer a flexible and comprehensive Laboratory Approval Program for Export (LAP-Export) for approving qualified laboratories to provide reliable analyses of meat and poultry products for export for pesticide residues, environmental contaminants, veterinary drug residues, antibiotic residues, microorganisms, and parasites.
Laboratories must meet the program requirements
which include abiding by international standards (ISO 17025), following good laboratory practices and quality assurance and control practices, using established methods and accepted equipment, and passing on-site audits. Laboratories voluntarily apply and pay program fees to participate in this user-fee funded program. Laboratories approved to perform testing of products offered for export certification by FSIS are listed in the Official Listing of USDA-approved Laboratories for LAP-Export.
For more information on countries’ export requirements for meat and poultry products, visit FSIS’ website on exporting products
Also visit the AMS Livestock Poultry and Seed Program, Quality Assessment Division website for more information on Quality Systems Verification Programs (QSVP)
which provide companies that supply agricultural products and services the opportunity to assure customers of their ability to provide consistent quality products or services.