USDA Extends Deadline for “Product of U.S.A.” Comment Period

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Citing “significant interest from stakeholders,” the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) approved a request from the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) and American Grassfed Association (AGA) to extend the public comment period for the groups’ petition to stop imported meat from being mislabeled “Product of U.S.A.” The new deadline for comments is Sept. 17, 2018.

The OCM and AGA joint petition, filed on June 12, 2018, would restore the original FSIS handbook definition of “Product of U.S.A.,” which was based on the origin of the ingredients being labeled. Sometime between April 1985 and August 2005 the ingredient-based standard was repealed by FSIS and replaced with an undefined processing standard. Following the repeal of mandatory Country of Origin Labeling in 2015, global meatpacking corporations began abusing the label by misbranding meat and meat products from foreign countries as “Product of U.S.A.” after moving them through USDA-inspected processing plants.

The proposed policy change has received almost exclusively positive comments from a wide-ranging base of nearly 2,000 farm and food stakeholders. Supportive comments were submitted by farm organizations including National Farmers Union, National Family Farm Coalition, and U.S. Cattlemen’s Association; more than 50 members of the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, including Farm Aid and Union of Concerned Scientists; policy and community organizations, including the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy and Western Organization of Resource Councils; United Food and Commercial Workers, a leading labor organization; The Humane Society of the United States, a leading animal welfare organization, and businesses including Natural Grocers and Strauss Brands. Comments submitted by individual farmers and consumers have been overwhelmingly positive. In the minority are a couple of organizations whose representation and interests lie with multinational meatpacking corporations that profit from the deceptive standard.

In a video posted on OCM’s Facebook page, consumers’ outrage over the misbranding of the origin of meat is clear as grocery shoppers are told the “Product of U.S.A.” label does not mean the meat products actually originate from the U.S.A.

OCM encourages everyone to lift their voices and file comments before the September 17, 2018 deadline.

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12 thoughts on “USDA Extends Deadline for “Product of U.S.A.” Comment Period”

  1. USDA STOP ALLOWING IMPORTED MEAT TO BE LABELED PRODUCT OF USA!
    THIS IS CRIMINAL!!! IT SHOULD NEVER HAVE BEEN ALLOWED!
    DECEPTION OF THE HIGHEST!

  2. Please make labeling unequivocable with regard to its growth and processing source. It should clearly say where the meat is grown and where it is processed.

  3. If a meat product was not grown and processed here it MUST NOT BE LABELED AS A PRODUCT OF THE U.S. A. That meat product must have it’s actual country of origin – where it was raised and processed on the label.

  4. How about we just stop abusing and torturing animals and stop creating a wasteland out of our earth and water ways?
    Eating meat is not only bad for the human body – scientists have confirmed – but the industry is destroying and poisoning and destroying our oceans, air and earth. Cows are meant eat only grass, not corn and not soy. Please take the argument further. Meat from anywhere is a bad idea. Let’s stop playing information games and let’s discuss the real issues at hand: GLOBAL WARMING!!

  5. What is truly criminal is the way that these poor animals are treated – USA or imported – it is terrible. People put on your thinking caps!

  6. You have a duty to uphold transparency in the marketplace for both consumers and farmers and ranchers. By not holding companies with deceptive marketing practices accountable and ensuring that products with the label “Product of U.S.A.” are ONLY sourced from American farmers and ranchers, you are robbing everyone involved – the consumer for paying for a product that has inaccurate labeling and the farmers and ranchers who are losing a substantial amount of money which they cannot afford to lose because YOU ARE NOT DOING YOUR JOB and allowing foreign and corporate interests to profit off of these inaccurate labels, to the complete detriment of these smaller producers. COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE!

  7. It is apparent that labeling products, any products, whether those products are meat or anything else, as being a product of the USA when in fact they are not, is an attempt to deceive the consumer. Practices of this type must be abandoned and give way to absolute and unequivocal transparency. Only products that are produced, grown, manufactured or otherwise originated and were completed in the USA should be allowed to carry a label indicating they are a product of the USA. Anything less than absolute truth is legalizing fraud against the American consumer. May we even suggest …government sanctioned fraud?

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