Global Quality Pork Charter Rules

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Appendix 4 Shelf life comparison

Last Updated: 7 Jan 2022.

1.1 Permitted shelf life for BQAP pork and products

The shelf life of all chilled pork raw material shall be compliant to that specified within legislation (853/2004). Consideration should also be given to the FSA guidance The safety and shelf-life of vacuum and modified atmosphere packed chilled foods with respect to non-proteolytic Clostridium botulinum. Chill temperature, traceability and shelf-life records shall be maintained.

The table below displays the shelf life that may be permitted for BQAP pork and products within scope of the BMPA Quality Pork Charter modules.

Standard for pork raw material for all purposes covered in the BMPA Quality Pork Charter.Kill+4
Pork raw material that is held in chill rooms which are not disturbed, and the pork raw material is not intended to be used in a meat preparation, the storage period may be extended by up to 3 days IF compliant with clause 1.2 belowKill+7 (4+3)
Pork raw material that is intended to be used in a meat preparation or mince, and is held in chill rooms which are not disturbed, the storage period may be extended by up to 2 days IF compliant with clause 1.2 belowKill+6 (4+2)
Pork raw material that is vacuum packed, gas flushed or deep chilled, additional storage life beyond these limits may be permitted IF compliant with clause 1.2 belowNo limit.
Pork raw material to be frozen, at the point of product entering the freezer. If compliant with clause 1.2 below Kill+4 (4+3)
Comments: For movements between BQAP-approved sites only, where the pork has been slaughtered, cut and processed on BQAP-approved sites, extension of life beyond kill+4 days can be verified through the review of chill temperature monitoring records, without the requirement to package or deep chill the raw material.

1.2 Extension of shelf life

Any extension of shelf life greater than kill+4 days shall be subject to satisfactory documented shelf-life verification (sensory and microbiological evaluation) that shows that the extension of life does not, under worst case conditions, adversely affect product safety or quality. The microbiological limits shall not exceed the levels that will impact the quality and food safety of any finish products. 

NOTE: the UK has a derogation for the extension to the 6-day kill to mince.