Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Standard for Naturally Raised Meat

News from the USDA could potentially impact many farmers’ market vendors in Missouri that sell meat at their community markets.

WASHINGTON, Nov. 27, 2007 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture is seeking comments on a proposed voluntary standard for a naturally raised marketing claim for livestock and meat. The standard will be published as a Notice and Request for Comments in the Federal Register and is titled the U.S. Standards for Livestock and Meat Marketing Claims, Naturally Raised Claim for Livestock and the Meat and Meat Products Derived from such Livestock.

USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) works with representatives of the various agricultural commodity marketing chains and others to establish or revise U.S. standards for nearly 240 agricultural products. The standards are used in the marketplace to specify the quality of commodities. Standards facilitate commerce by providing a common language for trade and a means of measuring value in marketing agricultural products.

Increasingly, livestock and meat producers are using production or processing claims to distinguish their products in the marketplace. AMS, through its voluntary certification and audit programs, verifies the accuracy of these claims. The proposed standard will establish the minimum requirements for those producers who choose to operate a USDA verified program involving a naturally raised claim. The naturally raised marketing claim will also be a voluntary program.

The request for comments will be published in the Nov. 28, 2007, Federal Register. Comments must be received on or before Jan. 28, 2008, and should be submitted through the Web site at http://www.regulations.gov. Written comments should be mailed to: Naturally Raised Marketing Claim, Room 2607–S, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20250–0254; or faxed to (202) 720–1112. All comments should reference docket number LS-07-16. Copies of the notice are available through the above physical address or by accessing the Website.

No comments: