House Bill 3835, the Processing Revival and Intrastate Meat Exemption Act, would exempt “custom slaughter facilities” from required federal inspection of the “slaughter of animals and the preparation of the carcasses, parts thereof, meat and meat food products” if the custom facility is in compliance with laws of the state where it is located, and the meat products processed are distributed exclusively within that state. The bill specifically notes that none of its provisions shall be interpreted to preempt any state laws concerning slaughter at custom facilities.
Legislation Would Exempt Custom Slaughter Facilities from Federal Inspection
Biden Withdraws Poultry Processing Speeds Executive Order
President Biden has withdrawn an executive order that would have allowed poultry processing plants to slaughter 175 birds per minute.
Unions File Suit Challenging USDA Line Speed Waivers
The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union and local counterparts in six states have filed suit against the United States Department of Agriculture, alleging that the agency’s line speed waiver program violates the Administrative Procedure Act.
New Jersey Considers Farm Worker Protection Bill
New Jersey Assembly No. 4404 proposes additional protections for farm workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, including increased inspections, government reporting on enforcement activities, prioritization of farm workers for testing, provision of separate living facilities for workers exposed to communicable diseases, and proper availability of personal protective equipment.
Bill Would Suspend Increases in Line Speeds
H.R. 7521 proposes to suspend active and prohibit future waivers for high line speeds in slaughterhouses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
House Appropriations Bill Would Block Line Speed Waivers
The House Agriculture Appropriations bill would revoke all line speed waivers under the Federal Meat Inspection Act or Poultry Products Inspection Act.
New York Considers Shutting Down Live Animal Markets
New York Assembly Bill A10399 and Senate Bill S8291 propose to indefinitely ban the operation of markets that sell freshly slaughtered animals, sometimes referred to as wet markets. The legislation also proposes the formation of a task force to address public health and animal welfare concerns of slaughterhouses.
USDA Issues Additional Regulatory Waivers Amid COVID-19 Crisis
The Food Safety Inspection System has issued at least seven new regulatory waivers this year, allowing slaughterhouses to increase line speeds and self-police, rather than being subject to the review of federal inspectors.