Process for the implementation of a Plant Inspection Assistant (PIA) system in approved slaughterhouses

Guidance on the implementation of a Plant Inspection Assistant

Under Regulation (EC) No 854/2004 Member States may permit slaughterhouse staff to carry out tasks of official auxiliaries and form part of the Competent Authority’s (CA’s) independent inspection team in controlling the production of poultry meat.  

Food business operators wishing to implement the Plant Inspection Assistant (PIA) system in an approved establishment must seek permission from Food Standards Scotland (FSS) prior to its use.

FSS is not responsible for training PIAs but is the CA to authorise PIAs to work under the supervision, direction and responsibility of the Official Veterinarian (OV).

Application process

To apply for a permit to implement a PIA system in your establishment please contact your plant OV or FSS Operations Manager, who can advise you on the steps of the application process.

Only establishments producing poultry and rabbit meat that have a proven record of use of good hygiene practices (GHPs) and a procedure based on Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles for at least 12 months will be considered.

A process map of the application/training application can be found here.

For further information please contact:

Approvals and Certification Team
Food Standards Scotland

4th Floor, Pilgrim House

Old Ford Road


AB11 5RL


After implementation of the PIA system

Once the PIA system has been introduced the establishment will be subject to scheduled monitoring assessment carried out by FSS to demonstrate the suitability of the premises to maintain a PIA system.

Once an authorisation has been granted it may be withdrawn if FSS is satisfied the conditions by which it was granted are no longer being met.