Unsuccessful efforts of the Oregon retail meat industry to comply with the subsequently revoked Oregon bacterial standards for raw meats are reviewed. The satisfactory role of bacterial standards in regulation of pasteurized milk in contrast to their unsatisfactory role in retail raw meats is discussed. It is concluded that bacterial counts on raw meat cannot serve as indicators of: (a) health hazards, (b) insanitary conditions. (c) product spoilage, or (d) an aesthetic value of the food. Bacterial standards on raw meats, as applied in Oregon for 4 years, are considered as unjustifiable because they: (a) could not accomplish what they purported to do, i.e., reduce public health hazards, (b) were not technically feasible, i.e., were unattainable under the conditions of current good manufacturing practice in the industry, and (c) were not administratively feasible.

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