Drug residues in beef: USDA's FSIS unveils cutting-edge testing method

The United States Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA's FSIS) is about to revolutionize beef safety testing with a new multi-residue quantitation method for detecting chemical residues in beef muscle samples.    

The new method, labeled “Quantitation of Animal Drug Residues by High-Resolution, Accurate-Mass Liquid Chromatography Mass Spectrometry (HRAM LC-MS),” represents a significant advancement in veterinary drug residue analysis.    

This method can quantify 17 veterinary drugs from 7 drug classes, including analgesics/anti-inflammatory drugs, β-lactam/cephalosporins, benzimidazole, general drugs, macrolides, sulfonamides, and tetracyclines, in bovine muscle.    

With this method, it would be possible to quantify several veterinary drugs that were previously challenging to measure. The new method will also replace several single analyte or specific drug class quantitation methods that use older technology (CLG-CEF2, CLG-FLX4, CLG-PENG1, CLG-SUL4, and CLG-TIL1). It also tightens safety measures with lower detection limits, aligning better with established drug residue tolerances. Furthermore, it promises to deliver faster results for presumptive positive residues, enabling more timely and effective interventions when needed.    

The USDA’s FSIS has coupled this cutting-edge technology with user-friendly formats, providing stakeholders with the necessary tools to assure the safety and quality of beef products. The introduction of this advanced beef safety assessment method promises numerous advantages that have the potential to redefine the entire industry.