A research call on the safety of Mechanically Separated Meat (MSM) compared to other meat products will help assess whether current restrictions are appropriate to protect public health.
The UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) is inviting tenders on microbial evaluation of poultry and pork MSM compared with fresh cuts of meat, meat preparations and minced meat products.
Research should include Campylobacter and Salmonella and samples will be tested during production, chilling, freezing and storage, enabling identification of microbiological changes during processing, which will affect final meat safety.
The European Union describes two types of MSM: Techniques that do not alter the structure of the bones produce 'Type 1 MSM', where the calcium content is not significantly higher than that of minced meat, all other processes produce 'Type 2 MSM'.
Applications must be submitted using the electronic procurement system by midday Monday 27 January 2014.