Tag Archives: USDA

USDA Publishes Final Rule to “Modernize” Pork Inspection

As we have previously covered on this blog, on February 1, 2018, FSIS put forward a proposed rule to establish a voluntary, opt-in inspection system for market hog slaughter establishments, called the New Swine Slaughter Inspection System (NSIS). The proposal had received pushback from consumer groups and several media outlets, with FSIS defending its proposal … Continue Reading

USDA’s Proposal to Close SNAP Automatic Eligibility “Loophole” Faces Pushback from U.S. Mayors

On July 24, 2019, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FSN) published a proposed rule, “Revision of Categorial Eligibility in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)” aiming to close what it calls an automatic eligibility “loophole” in the program. As background, the law authorizing SNAP includes specific income and asset standards … Continue Reading

Flies Are a Potential E. Coli Vector in Leafy Green Illness Outbreaks

Researchers with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service have isolated Escherichia (E.) coli O157:H7 from a variety of pest flies in leafy green fields planted up to 180 meters away from cattle feedlots.  Among most fly species captured on sticky traps at leafy green farms, 22.3-29 flies per 1,000 flies carried E. coli O157:H7. … Continue Reading

FDA Holds Ground in Challenge over GE Animal Regulatory Authority

As previously reported on this blog, on June 11, the President issued Executive Order Modernizing the Regulatory Framework for Agricultural Biotechnology Products, ensuring coordination across federal regulatory agencies for biotechnology products. Referring to gene-edited crops and animals, the executive order told regulators to use their existing powers “to exempt low-risk products of agriculture biotechnology from … Continue Reading

President Trump Issues Executive Order to Streamline Regulation of Genetically Modified Food

On June 11, President Trump issued an Executive Order Modernizing the Regulatory Framework for Agricultural Biotechnology Products.  The purpose of the Executive Order (EO) is to employ a science-based regulatory system that evaluates products based on human health and safety and potential benefits and risks to the environment with an ultimate goal of facilitating innovation, … Continue Reading

USDA Removes Standard for “Jambalaya”

On May 29, 2019, the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced in a letter that it will remove the entry for Jambalaya from the Food Standards and Labeling Policy Book (Policy Book).  The change came in response to a 2013 petition from Zatarain’s, a Louisiana-based food company owned by McCormick & Company, Inc., … Continue Reading

Looking Ahead: Proposed Regulatory Actions by FDA and USDA in the Fall 2018 Unified Agenda

The Executive Office of the President recently released the Spring 2019 Unified Agenda. As we described in our post for the release of the Fall 2018 Unified Agenda, twice a year, federal agencies publish this comprehensive report describing regulations currently under development or recently completed. The agenda provides stakeholders with a preview of agencies’ top … Continue Reading

USDA Updates FAQs Regarding BE Labeling

As previously reported on this blog earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) posted Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and responses for manufacturers concerning its bioengineered (BE) food labeling rule (formally known as the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard (NBFDS)). We pointed out in that blog that the FAQs were not … Continue Reading

USDA Posts FAQ regarding BE Labeling and Promises Future Guidance

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) has issued an FAQ for manufacturers concerning its bioengineered (BE) food labeling rule (formally known as the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard (NBFDS)).  The final rule was issued in December 2018 and does not come into effect for several years, but questions are being raised by industry regarding … Continue Reading

USDA Amends National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances for Organic Handling or Production

The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is responsible for maintaining the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (the “National List”) for organic handling and production as part of the National Organic Program (NOP) under the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 (OFPA; Public Law 101-624, Nov. 28, 1990).  The … Continue Reading

CSPI Calls for National Registry of Gene-Edited Agricultural Crops

Criticizing the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for lack of oversight over foods produced with gene editing technology (e.g., Zinc Finger Nucleases, TALENS, or CRISPR/Cas 9), the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) is calling for a federal registry of all gene-edited agricultural crops. CSPI is not … Continue Reading

Proposed Legislation Would Lock-In USDA’s Oversight of Cell-Based Meat

As we previously reported, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have issued a “Formal Agreement Between FDA and USDA Regarding Oversight of Human Food Produced Using Animal Cell Technology Derived from Cell Lines of USDA-amenable Species” (the press release can be … Continue Reading

USDA Pushes Back Against Washington Post Over New Swine Slaughter Inspection System

On February 1, 2018, FSIS put forward a proposed rule to establish a voluntary, opt-in inspection system for market hog slaughter establishments, called the New Swine Slaughter Inspection System (NSIS). Under the proposed rule, hog slaughter plants may voluntarily join a new inspection system whereby establishment personnel would be responsible for sorting and removing unfit … Continue Reading

FDA Encourages Participation in Voluntary Plant Biotechnology Consultation Program and Revises Guidance on Voluntary Labeling of Foods Derived Plant Biotechnology

Given the increased prevalence of plant biotechnology to develop innovative foods, FDA is reminding industry of its voluntary consultation program to ensure the safety of and public confidence in plant biotechnology-derived foods.  FDA describes “plant biotechnology” as “certain methods scientists can use to introduce new traits or characteristics to a plant.” FDA has assisted in … Continue Reading

Arizona Legislators Join Cell-Cultured Meat Labeling Debate

As previously reported on this blog, there has been considerable discussion around the regulation of cell-cultured meat both at the federal and state levels. Earlier this month, USDA and FDA published a formal agreement regarding federal agency oversight of human food produced using cell technology. Under the formal agreement, FDA will oversee cell collection and … Continue Reading

HHS and USDA Announce 2020 Dietary Guidelines Topics and Advisory Committee Meeting

In February 2018, The Daily Intake Blog reported that the U.S. Department of Health and Humans Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) were soliciting “public comments on the proposed priority topics and supporting scientific questions that will guide the development of the upcoming 2020-2025” edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (the … Continue Reading

FDA Removes Import Alert for GE Salmon

U.S. Food and Drug Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., announced on March 8, that the Agency was deactivating a 2016 import alert that prevented genetically engineered (GE) salmon from entering the U.S. By way of background, in 2015, FDA approved a New Animal Drug Application (NADA) related to AquAdvantage Salmon after determining that it met the … Continue Reading

USDA and FDA Provide Additional Details on Joint Regulation of Cell-Cultured Meat

As we previously reported, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in a November 16, 2018 joint press release, announced an agreement on joint regulation of cell-cultured meat.  Though the framework was not released at the time, the press release indicated that … Continue Reading

This Week’s Cannabis Highlights

As previously reported in this blog, the 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp – defined as Cannabis sativa L. with less than 0.3% THC on a dry weight basis – from the definition of “marihuana”.  The 2018 Farm Bill also assigned responsibility for regulating the manufacture of hemp to the states under plans approved by USDA … Continue Reading

Enforcement Activity by the USDA Food Safety Inspection Service Against Imported Siluriformes (Catfish) for “Failure to Present” Violations

  As reported here, the domestic and import inspection program for Siluriformes fish and fish products (including catfish) was transferred from FDA to USDA in response to a congressional mandate.  After September 1, 2017, only foreign countries that had submitted documentation showing the equivalence of their Siluriformes fish inspection system with that of the U.S. … Continue Reading

Raw Turkey Pet Food Linked to Human Illness in Minnesota

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has issued a recall notice for three lots of raw turkey pet food manufactured by Woody’s Pet Food Deli after linking a human case of Salmonella Reading infection to the product. The infected person served the recalled food to a pet, which also tested positive for Salmonella but a … Continue Reading

FDA and USDA Are Back to Work, But Getting Back to “Normal” May Still Take Time

  FDA and USDA employees furloughed during the 35-day partial government shutdown have returned to work this morning after the President signed legislation on Friday to temporarily reopen the government for 3 weeks.  While this is very good news, it will take some time before all activities are running smoothly again. FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb’s … Continue Reading
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