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Meat Institute Files Comments Opposing USCA Petition Regarding Labeling of ‘Lab grown’ Meat

Monday, May 21, 2018

(North American Meat Institute)

The Meat Institute filed comments to the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) opposing the U.S. Cattlemen’s Association’s (USCA) petition requesting that FSIS exclude from the definition of “beef” and “meat” products not derived directly from animals that have been raised and slaughtered in the “traditional manner.”

The comments call the petition “ill-considered,” stating if granted it likely would result in ceding jurisdiction over “lab grown” and “cell cultured” meat and poultry products to the Food and Drug Administration – a result that would yield chaos in the marketplace. “Ensuring lab grown products are subject to FSIS inspection and the same regulatory requirements as other meat and poultry products will help ensure a level playing field in the market place,” the comments state.

The Meat Institute also contends the petition asks FSIS to implement USCA’s proposed definition utilizing an inappropriate vehicle – the Standards and Labeling Policy Book. The Meat Institute asserts the petition seeks to amend FSIS’ long-standing definition of “meat” by imposing a limitation on the term that may not be justified, and if pursued, should not be done without using the appropriate notice and comment rulemaking process. The Meat Institute also requests FSIS deny the petition’s attempt to define “beef,” citing concerns about the implications of moving forward with developing a definition for one species and leaving out others for which no similar requests have been made.

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