Policies & Links
USDA is committed to making the content on our websites accessible to all USDA customers and employees. We prepare our documents to meet the requirements of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. In some cases, we offer the content in multiple formats; for example, fact sheets are often available in both PDF and HTML text.
If you have any comments or suggestions for improvement, or if you are having trouble with a particular document or page, please email the webmaster mailbox.
Read the USDA Comment Policy regarding social media tools and resources.
Use of FSIS Information, Fact Sheets, and Campaign Materials
Information presented in FSIS fact sheets, or on the FSIS website, is considered public information and may be distributed or copied. Authorization to reprint is hereby granted.
Use of appropriate byline/photo/image credits is requested. Please credit the sponsoring agency as U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service.
Specific usage guidelines apply to materials that are part of the our educational campaigns: Thermy™, Fight BAC!® (leaving this site), and Be Food Safe. These guidelines are available on the respective web pages.
Use of commercial and trade names does not imply approval or constitute endorsement by USDA or the Food Safety and Inspection Service. Links to this site that imply endorsement of a commercial product or service by the Agency are not allowed.
- See Also Copyright Pertaining to U.S. Government Work (USA.gov)
Photographs on the FSIS Web Site
FSIS encourages the reprint and distribution of its publications or fact sheets for educational purposes. However, publications or fact sheets on this site may include images used under license and protected by the copyright laws of the U.S., Canada, and elsewhere. These images may not be saved or downloaded except for printing of the publications or fact sheets.
Use of USDA Symbols
USDA symbols or logos are intended for official USDA use only. They are expressly excluded from any application that would imply or endorse a commercial product or service. The symbol or logo may not be used by anyone outside of USDA without permission.
Please contact the USDA Creative Development Team at (202) 720-6641 if you would like to include USDA symbols, seals, logos, or other such branding in your project. CDT will ensure that all symbols and logos adhere to USDA regulations.
The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is a Federal statute that allows any person the right to obtain Federal agency records unless the records (or a part of the records) are protected from disclosure by any of the nine exemptions contained in the law.
In compliance with the requirements of the U.S. Department of Agriculture Quality of Information Guidelines, this page provides information pertaining to requests for correction of information disseminated by FSIS.
- FSIS Policies & Contact Information, Peer Review Agenda & Plans
- USDA Quality of Information Contact Information
Linking to the FSIS Web Site
Information presented on the FSIS website is in the public domain. You may link to the site provided you do not place or use the link in such manner that any endorsement or approval by USDA or FSIS of any product, service, or organization is implied.
Links from FSIS to Other Sites
FSIS follows USDA policy, which is to provide links to other governmental organizations only (including University Extension). Links to nongovernmental information are used only if an official relationship, such as one involving a Memorandum of Agreement or Memorandum of Understanding, exists between the USDA program and the nongovernmental organization being linked.
Once you access an external site through a link that we provide, you are subject to the copyright and licensing restrictions of the new site. FSIS cannot authorize use of copyrighted materials contained in linked websites. FSIS does not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of information contained on a linked website. FSIS is not responsible for transmissions users receive from linked websites.
If you download one of our mobile "apps" for an Android or Apple device, please take note of the specific information in the app store. You will find a disclaimer similar to this one:
Our mobile applications are provided “as is” and on an “as-available” basis. We hereby disclaim all warranties of any kind, express or implied, including without limitation the warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement. We make no warranty that our mobile applications will be error-free, that the underlying data will be error-free, or that access thereto will be continuous or uninterrupted. USDA does not warrant, either explicitly or by implication, that this software program will not cause damage to the user’s computer or computer operating system, nor does USDA warrant, either explicitly or implicitly, the effectiveness of the software application.
For more information on the use of mobile apps, consult the documentation for your particular device.
The purpose of the Notification and Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation Act of 2002 (NO FEAR Act), Public Law 107-174, is to improve agency accountability for antidiscrimination and whistleblower laws.
As a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) employee, you may have been required to sign a non-disclosure policy, form, or agreement (NDA) to access classified or other information. You should read the following statement as if it were incorporated into any NDA you have signed:
"These provisions are consistent with and do not supersede, conflict with, or otherwise alter the employee obligations, rights, or liabilities created by existing statute or Executive order relating to (1) classified information, (2) communications to Congress, (3) the reporting to an Inspector General of a violation of any law, rule, or regulation, or mismanagement, a gross waste of funds, an abuse of authority, or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety, or (4) any other whistleblower protection. The definitions, requirements, obligations, rights, sanctions, and liabilities created by controlling Executive orders and statutory provisions are incorporated into this agreement and are controlling."
The provisions in the following list of Executive orders and statutory provisions are controlling in the case of any conflict with an USDA NDA.
- Executive Order No. 13526;
- Section 7211 of Title 5, United States Code (governing disclosures to Congress);
- Section 1034 of Title 10, United States Code, as amended by the Military Whistleblower Protection Act (governing disclosure to Congress by members of the military);
- Section 2302(b)(8) of Title 5, United States Code, as amended by the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 (governing disclosures of illegality, waste, fraud, abuse or public health or safety threats);
- Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (50 U.S.C. § 421, et seq.) (governing disclosures that could expose confidential Government agents);
- The statutes which protect against disclosure that may compromise the national security, including sections 641, 793, 794, 798, and 952 of Title 18, United States Code; and
- Section 4(b) of the Subversive Activities Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. § 783(b)).
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or a part of an individual's income is derived from any public assistance program. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD). To file a complaint of discrimination write to USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call 1-800-795-3272 (voice) or (202) 720-6382 (TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.
We will collect no personal information about you when you visit our website unless you choose to provide that information to us. For complete information:
- Personally Identifiable Information (PII) at USDA
When visiting websites linked from the FSIS site, take note of the privacy and security policies on the linked site. FSIS is not responsible for transmissions users receive from linked websites.
On January 18, 2007, the President issued Executive Order 13422, "Amendment to Executive Order 12866 for Regulatory Planning and Review." On that same day, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued a final Bulletin entitled, "Agency Good Guidance Practices." The primary focus of the Executive Order and Bulletin is to increase the quality and transparency of agency guidance practices and the significant documents produced through them.
- FSIS Compliance and Contact Information at WhiteHouse.gov
- FSIS Policies on Regulatory Decisions
- Business.GOV Federal Compliance Contacts and Resources
Section 207(f)(2) of the E-Government Act of 2002 requires federal agencies to develop an inventory of information to be published on their Web sites, establish a schedule for publishing information, make those schedules available for public comment, and post the schedules and priorities on the Web site.
If you have comments or questions about the FSIS website, you may send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. For answers to other types of questions, you may want to try one of our automated Q & A tools:
- Ask Karen (Safe food handing for consumers; prevention of foodborne illness)
- askFSIS (Policy and technical questions about inspection, labeling, exports, etc.)
- Small Plant Help Desk (Questions from small and very small meat/poultry/egg product plant owners and operators)