Canadian Carcass Poultry Grading Program – Inspection Manual for Graded Poultry
6 Poultry Grading Evaluation

The following poultry grading evaluation plan is to be used for Area Audits. This plan is also for evaluating imported and exported products lots of graded poultry products, when required.

The purpose of the evaluation is to verify the compliance to the Livestock and Poultry Carcass Grading Regulations considering the grading name application, the packaging and the marking.

6.1 Sampling Plan

The sampling plan is exclusively to evaluate the grading name application. It consists of selecting randomly from the lot, a designated number of units of product required to make up the sample size.

The sample is inspected and the number of defective units recorded, upon which the entire lot is accepted or rejected according to the acceptance and rejection number criteria given in the plan.

Note: In some cases, such as the use of opaque bags, the grading evaluation may also include a Quality Assurance (QA) evaluation that is performed on line before packaging.

6.1.1 Definition and Acceptability of Sample Units

A sample unit comprises a group of 12 graded carcasses. Where carcasses are packed in containers holding a different number of carcasses than 12, the containers are converted into units of 12 carcasses each.

A sample unit is acceptable if not more than one (1) defective carcass is found from the twelve (12) carcasses selected and examined. The sample unit is unacceptable when two (2) or more defective carcasses are observed within the sample unit.

6.1.2 Sample Size and Acceptance Criteria

The number of units inspected shall be equal to the sample size given by the sampling plan. If the number of defective (nonconforming) units found in the sample is equal to or less than the acceptance number (Ac) for the appropriate sample size, the lot shall be considered acceptable upon removal of the defective carcasses found. If the number of defective (nonconforming) units is equal to or greater than the rejection number (Re), the lot shall be considered non-acceptable.

The following table explains the number of units to evaluate for a specific lot size and the according accept (Ac) and reject (Re) numbers.

Poultry Grading Evaluation Table – Sample Size and Acceptance Criteria

Sampling Plan for all Poultry except Fresh Turkeys
Lot Size
(number of units)
Sample Size
(number of units)
Ac Re
2 – 90 5 1 2
91 – 150 8 2 3
151 – 280 13 3 4
281 – 500 20 5 6
501 – 1,200 32 7 8
1,201 – 3,200 50 10 11
3,201 – 10,000 80 14 15
Plus 10,000 125 21 22
Sampling Plan for Fresh Turkeys
Lot Size
(number of units)
Sample Size
(number of units)
Ac Re
2 – 15 2 1 2
16 – 25 3 2 3
26 – 90 5 3 4
91 – 150 8 5 6
151 – 280 13 7 8
281 – 500 20 10 11
501 – 1,200 32 14 15
Plus 1,200 50 21 22

6.1.3 Rejection of a Lot

The lot is rejected when one of the following is observed during a poultry grading evaluation:

  • a sample evaluation result having the number of evaluated units meeting the rejection number;
  • a sample evaluation exceeding the maximum tolerance of 8.33% of defective carcasses for packaging errors (e.g. ballooning, torn wraps, etc.);
  • a lot having marking deficiencies (not in compliance with the LPCG Regulations)

In these cases, the entire lot will automatically indicate a failure and the lot will be held. Each held lot requires corrective measures in two (2) different levels. The first corrective measures are required to correct the deficiencies on the graded product and the second corrective measures are is required to correct the deficiencies on the grading process.

Corrective measures on graded product:

During a grading audit on domestic product or a grading evaluation for export purposes, the corrective measure on the rejected lot requires the entire lot to be remarked as non-graded product. Any references to graded product according to the LPCG Regulations are to be removed. Depending on the severity of the deficiencies, the rejected lot may be extended to a larger scale (e.g. daily product, weekly product...).

Corrective measures on grading process:

After discussions with the operator during the on-site audit, a copy of the Corrective Action Plan (CAP) is to be sent to the Area Poultry Grading Specialist. The corrections may also include the monitoring procedures of the operator.

For any rejected lot evaluation during a grading audit for domestic market, please refer to the "Corrective Action Request" explained in the Compliance Verification System (CVS), explained in Chapter 18 of the Meat Hygiene Manual of procedures.

For rejected evaluations of imported or exported poultry grading products, please refer to the Chapter 10 and 11 of the Meat Hygiene Manual of procedures.

6.1.4 Result Recording

The results of the audits or the evaluations will be recorded on the "Poultry Grading Verification Report", the CFIA/ACIA 4631 Form.

On the "Additional Remarks" section, in addition to commenting on the markings and packaging of the poultry, other points related to product preparation and grading which impacts on the quality of the graded poultry should be recorded.

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