On November 1, 2023, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA’s FSIS) will begin a one-year sampling program of domestic beef, pork, and Siluriformes fish (commonly referred to as catfish) to determine levels of dioxins and dioxin-like compounds. The survey is part of FSIS’ effort to monitor dioxin in regulated products to provide insight on changes in human exposure to dioxin-like compounds through diet.

Dioxins are a group of compounds of public health concern that are found in the environment, generally occurring at very low levels as persistent environmental contaminants. FSIS in-plant personnel (IPP) will conduct sampling and USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) will analyze the samples. The recently announced survey is the latest in the recurring five-year cycle of dioxin surveys that FSIS conducts with other federal partners, including ARS, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

FSIS intends to publish the results of its survey on the FSIS Chemical Residues and Contaminants webpage, alongside previous survey results. FSIS has issued instructions to inspection program personnel in FSIS notices for livestock (cattle and swine) and for Siluriformes fish.