NATIONAL MEAT ASSOCIATION h 1970 Broadway, Suite 825, Oakland, CA 94612

(510) 763-1533 Fax (510) 763-6186 h Email Address: [email protected] h

Edited by Kiran Kernellu

December 30, 2002




NMA's Convention and MeatXPO'03, in Las Vegas, is a great opportunity for creative, entrepreneurial people, looking ahead!


NMA provides a basic program, anchored in four basic theme tracks: Science & Technology; Regulatory/Inspection; Business/Industry & Marketing/International. These are critical areas for meat industry businessmen and women. By bringing several key managers from each company, businesses can participate actively in the round table sessions, asking questions and getting answers. There is great opportunity for follow-up with key speakers in this interactive environment.


Speakers and participants in these organized round tables come from the industry, government, academia and related businesses that provide service and support. There are always new faces along with those who are repeat players by popular request.


The industry continues to change quite rapidly, as it makes the paradigm shift from a bureaucratic government-driven regulated industry to one where company responsibility, names and brands are driving the future. Also, the industry is increasingly sensitive to meeting the challenge of telling its own good story, rather than being victimized by the negative narration of its critics. It is essential that this occur. There'll be a lot of focus on new applications of science and technology, both in the formal program and especially in the exhibit hall. NMA will be holding some focused specialty meetings right on the floor of the exposition to provide good linkage with the suppliers who strongly support the industry and NMA. Big name suppliers will be on hand to demonstrate some of the latest in machinery and related technology.


NMA is unique among organizations in the way it opens its committee and board meetings to all of its members. This year, Dr. Garry McKee, appointed Administrator of FSIS last summer, will speak to the Board and all members are invited to attend. Earlier in the week, USDA Under Secretary for Food Safety Elsa Murano will make the keynote presentation at the opening general session on Monday. Dr. Murano has restored the application of science to the inspection program, a signal marker that was badly needed.


NMA is a "member-connected" organization, with close member-organization contacts and interaction. We bring this same interactive relationship to the convention arena, and attendees can expect to meet and talk with leading experts in all activities related to the industry and really get good "take home" stuff that will help them prosper in their business.


Sunday, MARCH 2- Wednesday, March 5, 2003




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Golf – Sunday, March 2, 2003 - 8:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m. - Rio Secco Golf Course

Prizes include 1st and 2nd foursome, closest to the pin, and longest drive.


Pac Reception – Sunday, March 2, 2003 - 7:00-8:00 p.m. - Rio “Wine Cellar”

Contributions serve to strengthen the legislative voice of members and NMA.


Spouse Tour - Monday, March 3, 2003 – 9:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Visit the Liberace Museum on the way to Boulder City. Lunch at the Happy Days Diner and continue on to Lake Mead for a cruise on the Desert Princess to gaze at sights like Fortification Hill and the Arizona Paint Pots.


Welcome Reception –Monday, March 3, 2003 – 5:30-6:30 p.m.

Mingle with friends and associates at the end of the first day and welcome new members while enjoying drinks and hors d’ oeuvres.


Gourmet Sausagefest – Tuesday, March 4, 2003 – 7:00-9:30 p.m.

Sample meat and sausage products manufactured by members and help us select the winner of the “Hold the Mustard” Award. Sponsored by Morehouse Foods, Inc. Mistress of Ceremonies for Sausagefest: Terry Lowry. Terry is a native San Franciscan, and a well-known radio and TV host in the Bay Area. Her bubbling enthusiasm will only make a really fun evening even better!


Exhibit Floor Food/Beverage Events

Monday, March 3, 2003 – Wine Tasting – 5:00-5:30 p.m.

Tuesday, March 4, 2003 – Supplier Luncheon – 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Wednesday, March 5, 2003 – Mini Breakfast – 9:00-10:00 a.m.

Wednesday, March 5, 2003 – Margarita Farewell – 1:00-1:30 p.m.


Cash Giveaway – Wednesday, March 5, 2003 – 12:00-1:00 p.m.

Thousands of dollars will be given away at the close of the show to some lucky registered attendees. Stay until the end because you must be present to win!




Monday, March 3, 2003 – 10:15-11:30 a.m.

Preventing H7, What Works; Managing the Paper Trail; The Workplace Q&A; COOL & Commodity Programs

Tuesday, March 4, 2003 – 2:45-4:00 p.m.

Making RTE Products Safe; Standards for HACCP Validation; Industry Consolidation; Telling the Meat Industry Story

Wednesday, March 5, 2003 –1:45-3:00 p.m.

Sampling & Testing Methods; Industry & Government Working Together; Security: Business & Industry; Moving Forward with Branded Meats




MARCH 5-6, 2003!


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** included in full registration fee (ticket required)



Suppliers’ Exposition and 57th Annual Convention


Sunday, March  2, 2003

8:00am – 1:30pm                   Golf Tournament                                                  Rio Secco

2:00pm - 4:00pm                    Strategic Planning Committee (limited)                           Miranda 1 

4:15pm – 5:30pm                   Beef Committee Meeting                                                    Miranda 6

                                                Small Stock Committee Meeting                                        Miranda 4

                                                Processed Meats Committee Meeting (limited)             Miranda 2

5:45pm – 6:45pm                   Executive Committee Meeting                                           Janiero

7:00pm – 8:00pm                   PAC Reception                                                     Rio’s Wine Cellar


Monday, March  3, 2003

6:30am – 8:00am                    Coffee Service                                                                      Pavilion Lobby                    

6:45am - 5:00pm                    Registration                                                                          Pavilion Lobby

7:00am - 8:30am                     Food Safety Committee                                                       Miranda 2

8:45am – 10:00am  Membership Committee Meeting                                     Miranda 6

                                                Education Committee Meeting                                         Miranda 4

                                                Associate Advisory Committee Meeting                       Miranda 2

9:30am - 4:00pm                    Spouse Tour                                                                         off site

10:00am – 10:30am                Coffee Service                                                                      Miranda  Corridor

10:15am-11:30am                   Science & Technology Round Table Seminar                Miranda 1             

                                                Regulatory & Legislative Round Table Seminar             Miranda 3

                                                Business & Industry Round Table Seminar                    Miranda 5

                                                Trade & Marketing Round Table Seminar                       Miranda 7

11:45am - 12:30pm    **         Pre-General Session Luncheon                                         Pavilion 8  

12:30pm – 1:30pm General Session                                                                   Pavilion 8 * Keynote Speaker: Dr. Elsa Murano, USDA Under Secretary for Food Safety


1:45PM - 6:30PM               EXHIBITS OPEN                                                                PAVILION 1-7

3:30pm – 4:00pm                   Specialty Meeting                                                                Pavilion 1-7

5:00pm – 5:30pm                   Wine Tasting                                                                       Pavilion 1-7

5:30pm – 6:30pm                   Welcome Reception                                                           Pavilion Lobby


Tuesday, March  4, 2003

6:00am – 8:00am                    Coffee Service                                                                      Pavilion Lobby

6:45am - 5:00pm                    Registration                                                                          Pavilion Lobby

7:00am – 8:30am                    Work Place Issues                                                               Miranda 2

7:00am – 9:00am                    Media Training Session                                                      TBA

9:00AM – 2:30PM              EXHIBITS OPEN                                                                PAVILION 1-7

10:00am – 10:30am                Specialty Seminar                                                 Pavilion 1-7

11:30am - 12:30pm                Supplier Luncheon                                                              Pavilion Lobby

12:30pm – 1:00pm Specialty Seminar                                                 Pavilion 1-7

1:30pm – 2:30pm                   Coffee Service                                                                      Miranda Corridor

2:45pm – 4:00pm                   Science & Technology Round Table Seminar                Miranda 1

                                                Regulatory & Legislative Round Table Seminar             Miranda 3

                                                Business & Industry Round Table Seminar                    Miranda 5

                                                Trade & Marketing Round Table Seminar                       Miranda 7

4:15pm - 6:00pm                    Board of Directors Meeting                                               Miranda 2-4-6

7:00pm – 9:30pm                   Annual Gourmet Sausagefest                                            Pavilion 8


Wednesday, March  5, 2003

6:30am – 8:00am                    Coffee Service                                                                      Pavilion Lobby

7:00am - 2:00pm                    Registration                                                                          Pavilion Lobby

7:00am - 8:45am                     Annual Meeting                                                                   Pavilion 8 * Keynote Speaker: TBA, Presentation of Awards, and NMA Business Meeting


9:00AM - 1:00PM               EXHIBITS OPEN                                                                PAVILION 1-7

9:00am - 10:00am                   Mini Breakfast on exhibit floor                                         Pavilion 1-7

10:30am – 11:00am                Specialty Meeting                                                                Pavilion 1-7

12:00pm – 1:00pm Cash Giveaway                                                                     Pavilion 1-7

1:00pm – 1:30pm                   Margarita Farewell                                                               Pavilion Lobby

1:30pm – 2:00pm                   Coffee Service                                                                      Miranda Corridor

1:45pm – 3:00pm                   Science & Technology Round Table Seminar                Miranda 1

                                                Regulatory & Legislative Round Table Seminar             Miranda 3

                                                Business & Industry Round Table Seminar                    Miranda 5

                                                Trade & Marketing Round Table Seminar                       Miranda 7


AMSA/NMA MEAT SCIENCE CONFERENCE  * Separate registration required



Wednesday, March 5          1:00pm - 5:00pm       Registration & Conference              Miranda 2 & 4

                5:30pm - 6:30pm       AMSA/NMA Reception Miranda 2 & 4

Thursday, March  6          8:00am -12:30-pm     Conference                                     Miranda 2 & 4


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USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service released the summary report of meats graded for the month of November, 2002. For all quality-graded beef, Choice was 59.3%, up from 57.5% in October. Select was 36.4 %, down from 38.4% the previous month. And Prime was 4.3%, up from 4.1 % in October. For a copy of the entire report, which covers beef, lamb and mutton, NMA members send a self-addressed, stamped (37¢) envelope to Kiran Kernellu at NMA or visit it online at




The California Beef Council announced the first place winner of the 2002 California Beef Backer Award – Far Western Tavern of Guadalupe. The second placer is another Central Coast restaurant – F. McClintock’s Saloon & Dining Hall of Shell Beach.


Far Western Tavern was established in 1958 by local cattle rancher Clarence Minetti because he wanted to bring true ranch hospitality and cuisine to travelers along Highway 1. The restaurant is known for its high quality, ranch-raised beef aged to perfection and served in a traditional western atmosphere. The old west-style steakhouse in the heart of Santa Maria country will receive plaque and prize money from the council in February 2003.


The California Beef Backer Award was established in 2000 to recognize restaurants that do the most to support the beef industry through “outstanding promotions, innovative educational programs and excellent beef,” according to a press release. California beef producers nominate restaurants. A committee of beef industry leaders selects the winners. For more information, contact Sarah DeForest or Laura Norman at (925) 484-2333 or [email protected]/[email protected].



NMA - East: 1400 - 16th St. N.W., Suite 400, Washington D.C. 20036 Ph. (202) 667-2108

NMA - West: 1970 Broadway, Suite 825, Oakland, CA 94612 Ph. (510) 763-1533 Fax (510) 763-6186

Edited by Kiran Kernellu

December 30, 2002




Food Chemical News (FCN) reported on December 23 about a Senate subcommittee field hearing held in Billings, MT, called by Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT) to “gain insight” into meat safety, and to determine whether small processors are regulated in an equitable manner. NMA was neither notified nor invited to participate. FCN headlined its story as “USDA put on the defensive …” Mr. William Smith, Deputy Administrator for the Office of Field Operations, testified for USDA and reportedly was a credible and accurate witness for the government.


A major issue, according to the owner of one small meat firm, was whether USDA appropriately follows up on ground beef that tests positive for E. coli O157:H7. Senator Burns reportedly has further questions that he wants to ask the Department. A key issue was why USDA doesn’t require its inspectors to document the origin of the raw meat used to make ground beef that USDA samples on a random basis.


About one-third of the total beef production in the United States ends up in ground beef. It is ground in many locations, including source locations at packing plants, in further processing establishments, and in thousands of retail stores. During these various stages of grinding, meat from different sources is blended to make the product desired by specific consumers. In essence, ground meat is made to meet hugely varying demands – all the way from ground sirloin and ground chuck meat, to blends based on lean to fat ratios within the requirements of the regulations. Documentation by USDA at every location where beef is ground would be a huge undertaking. Major meat processors often maintain such records for various reasons. A regulatory requirement to maintain such records would be an additional regulatory mandate, and would, in our estimation, cause more problems than it would solve.


It was suggested that the big beef packers would be shown to be responsible in such tracebacks. Testimony was also reportedly given suggesting that a major reason for contamination problems is the “tremendously fast line speeds used in the huge meat packing plants.” However, NMA knows of absolutely no science-based data that supports either of these claims.


Perhaps the most disappointing aspect of the story in FCN is the presentation of only one perspective in reporting the hearing in Billings. Traditionally, FCN has been recognized for its high standards of journalistic stewardship, which involves the presentation of all sides of an issue. We hope 2003 will see a return to that standard that will again command broad respect.


Thomas Jefferson said in his first inaugural: “Every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle.” The industry and NMA would truly relish the opportunity to offer insight in such matters. To that end, NMA welcomes media inquiries. NMA will help to get the story told from various perspectives.




The 2003 NMA Membership Directory has been distributed. Some directories may be missing pages 71-82 due to a printer error. Please contact us if your copy has missing pages, and we will gladly send you a complete directory. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.


Members who have not yet received their directories should also contact NMA-West at (510) 763-1533 or [email protected].


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Last week Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Mark McClellan announced that the agency would allow food companies to use labels with health claims on products. According to a Food Chemical News report, the “weight of the scientific evidence” must support the claim on the label. McClellan said during a news conference that such “qualified” food claims give consumers quick access to the latest information about the health benefits of foods, according to the report. Consumers can make more sound dietary choices with this new “Consumer Health Information for Better Nutrition Initiative.”


Reportedly, McClellan said the initiative will “usher in a new era of consumer empowerment.” FDA will remain the guarantor of the accuracy of consumer information, as food companies must get qualified claims approved by the agency. In fact, FDA issued guidance on structuring qualified food claims and is building a task force, headed by FDA Deputy Commissioner Lester Crawford, to review the claims.




The organic industry is branching out. But what’s behind the organic label may not be healthy in some cases, as the organic industry ventures into snack foods such as potato chips and cookies. A recent Wall Street Journal article relayed that “more [organic] snacks are likely to come,” citing consumers’ growing hunger for foods that can be made and eaten quickly.


The organic industry is responding to demand. Reportedly, PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay unit will soon launch organic potato chips, and Hansen Natural Corp.  already makes Blue Sky organic cola. The soda contains 160 calories per can, 20 more than Coca-Cola. “Organic snack food and junk food is still snack food and junk food,” said Julie Walsh, registered dietician and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association, in the Journal.


But consumers think that organic foods are better for their health. According to an article in last week, over 60% of American shoppers believe this. The study also found that more shoppers purchased organic foods in 2002 than ever before. Food Marketing Institute and Prevention magazine performed the study, which also found that higher prices might be the leading reason that shoppers don’t purchase more of the organic versions of their common, favorite foods. Competition may soon lower the costs of organic snacks, as more companies try to get a bite of the $9.3 billion-a-year organic industry.


Reassessment of HACCP Plan To Meet the Revised

E. coli O157:H7 Requirements

JANUARY 9, 2003

Los Angeles, CA


Space is limited to 35 participants, so register early!



Walter (Mickey) McEvers and John Miller

HACCP Consulting Group, LLC

Fairfax, VA (703) 385-1989


Sponsored by:



The next course will be held March 2, 2003 at the Rio Suite Hotel & Casino, 3700 W. Flamingo, Las Vegas, NV 89103; (800) 252-7777 *$136 single/double




Jan 10- 1-Day Listeria Seminars Associated with FSIS Directive 10,240.3

 Embassy Suites Hotel, 9801 Airport Blvd., Los Angeles, CA; (310) 215-1000

*This one-day seminar will review FSIS Directive 10,240.3, proper environmental sampling, SSOP

 re-evaluations, and HACCP plan reassessment.


Jan 23- Reassessment of HACCP to Meet the Revised E. Coli O157:H7 Requirements

Hotel TBA, Boston, MA


Jan. 30 and 31- 2-Day Listeria Seminars Associated with FSIS Directive 10,240.3

Embassy Suites Hotel, 9801 Airport Blvd., Los Angeles, CA; (310) 215-1000

*This two-day seminar will review FSIS Directive 10,240.3, more in-depth coverage of proper environmental sampling and testing procedures, laboratory testing considerations, tracking and trend analysis of data, SSOP re-evaluations, and HACCP plan reassessment. 


Feb 11- Environmental Monitoring with Silliker Lab

Marriot Hotel, Newport Beach, CA

*This seminar will review designing a comprehensive environmental monitoring program, environmental monitoring for investigational purposes, data management and maintenance of an environmental program.