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Find information on animal health topics, written for the veterinary professional.

Overview of Meat Inspection

By Charles M. Scanlan, DVM, PhD, Professor, Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University

Inspection of meat by qualified individuals to eliminate unwholesome, adulterated, or mislabeled meat or meat products from the food supply protects consumers from the physical, infectious, and toxic hazards that may originate in food animals, the environment, or people. The standard procedures do not cover every possibility concerning the acceptability of carcasses, organs, or other animal parts; personal judgment is also required to ensure that only wholesome, unadulterated product is approved for food. (Also see Chemical Residues in Food and Fiber.)

Inspection activities are divided into premortem, postmortem, and processing inspection.