Module 2 Quality Assured Pork

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6 Finished product standards

Last Updated: 17 Nov 2022.

6.1 Product specifications

All BQAP carcases, primals and cuts shall achieve the standards set by the BMPA Quality Assured Pork module as well as the following quality attributes:

6.1.1 The fat shall be firm and white.

6.1.2 The muscle shall be firm and of good colour without evidence of being pale, soft, exudative (PSE) or dark, firm, dry (DFD).

6.1.3 The muscle and fat shall show no sign of excessive bruising or blood splash.

6.1.4 Product shall be clean and free from extraneous matter.

6.1.5 Joints shall be separated by clean cuts and free from unnecessary cuts, slash marks and free from loose pieces of meat and exposed glands.

6.1.6 Rind-on cuts shall be free from hair, cuts and loose skin.

6.1.7 A maximum rind side blemish score of 2 on the Agricultural and Horticultural Dairy Board (AHDB) 5-point scale is permitted (see appendix 1). Carcases that do not meet this standard may be classified as BQAP if they conform in all other respects with the product specification and that they are further processed for rindless products only. View AHDB Blemish Scale

6.1.8 Rind-on cuts shall be sourced from carcasses of P2 maximum 16mm or P1+P2 maximum 32mm.

6.1.9 Where carcases are scanned, a measured lean percentage of 52% shall be treated as equivalent to this grade (see clause 6.1.8).Carcasses or primals in excess of this grade may be utilised providing fat is trimmed to meet the above specification.


Visual inspection of product.

6.2 Quality Attribute Specification (QAS) monitoring

6.2.1 The charter participant shall monitor the quality attributes of each product type certified by this BMPA pork module against a documented qquality attribute sspecification (QAS) that has been formally agreed by the charter participant and their customer. All products shall achieve the standards set by the BMPA Quality Assured Pork module.

6.2.2 Where product is despatched for further processing e.g. primals, the QAS monitoring shall be undertaken post butchery at any stage of the process up to the point of despatch.

6.2.3 Where there is evidence of significant attribute failure, the site shall investigate root cause and implement corrective action to minimise/prevent the issue from re-occurring.


Review examples of formally agreed QAS and that these are aligned to the approved products listed on the certificate of conformity. Visual inspection of finished product standards. Review examples of daily records of QAS verification checks since the last audit. 

6.3 Organoleptic testing

6.3.1 A standard operating procedure for organoleptic testing shall be in place and be conducted by a member of staff who is trained against the procedure.

6.3.2 An organoleptic sampling schedule shall be established for finished products certified by the BMPA Quality Assured Pork module at an appropriate frequency and as a minimum once per week to demonstrate compliance against the documented QAS. The product assessment shall include tenderness, succulence, flavour and visual appearance. This only applies to consumer packed products that do not requiring any further processing. This does NOT apply to primal products that will be further processed by slicing, chopping, dicing, mincing etc.

6.3.3 Records of assessment shall be retained. Where there is evidence of attribute failure, the site shall investigate root cause and implement corrective action. 


Review of organoleptic testing procedure, sampling schedule, assessment and training records.

6.4 Microbiological standards

6.4.1 The site shall have sampling plans in place for the routine monitoring of finished product. The scope of the sampling plan shall cover those approved products listed on the certificate of conformity. 

6.4.2 Finished products shall be tested weekly in accordance with a documented sampling schedule to demonstrate compliance with the following microbiological targets:

TargetUpper Limit 
ACC <1 x 104 cfu/g1 x 106 cfu/g

6.4.3 Where on-going non-conformance trends are established there shall be evidence that this is subject to root cause investigation and corrective action.


Review sampling schedule aligned to the scope of approved products and microbiological reports since the last audit. Evidence of corrective actions taken where non-conformance has been highlighted.