WASHINGTON — Editor’s note: The below statements were issued by U.S. Senator Pat Roberts, R-Kan. and Representatives Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Ron Kind (D-WI) and Chellie Pingree (D-ME), concerning the withdrawl of the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices rule.
Red Tape Officially Cut on Devastating Organic Livestock, Poultry Regulations
U.S. Senator Pat Roberts, R-Kan., Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, today praised the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) announcement of a finalized rule that withdraws a controversial regulation that would have revised organic livestock and poultry production standards. The withdrawal is effective May 13, 2018.
“It’s official – the Obama Administration rule that would have jeopardized the livelihood of organic livestock and poultry producers is gone,” said Chairman Roberts. “America’s organic livestock and poultry producers can now breathe easy that they can maintain the health of their flocks and herds the best way they see fit, and they will not be driven out of business by another government regulation. I thank Secretary Perdue for listening to their concerns and withdrawing this damaging rule.”
Chairman Roberts has consistently opposed this rule and other onerous regulations that increase the paperwork burden and drive up the cost of production for farmers and ranchers. Under Chairman Roberts’ leadership, the Senate Agriculture Committee held a hearing in May 2016 on the U.S. livestock and poultry sectors, which included testimony from a variety of producers. That same day, Chairman Roberts successfully led a bipartisan, bicameral request to extend the public comment period for this rule. In July 2016, Chairman Roberts led a bipartisan coalition of Senators in sending a second letter to the USDA requesting additional information on producers’ concerns over the rule.
–The Office of U.S. Senator Pat Roberts
Reps. DeFazio, DeLauro, Kind & Pingree: USDA Withdrawal of Organic Rule ‘Indefensible’
WASHINGTON, DC—Representatives Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Ron Kind (D-WI) and Chellie Pingree (D-ME) issued a joint statement today on the USDA’s withdrawal of the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices final rule.
“We are extremely disappointed that USDA withdrew the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices final rule. In doing so, USDA has ignored both the public and organic industry stakeholders. Without clear standards from the USDA, we are worried that businesses in our Districts will suffer as consumers lose confidence in the organic label.
“The USDA has based its decision on a number of false contentions. This final rule would have strengthened—not hurt—participation in the National Organic Program by ensuring a level playing field in the industry.
“USDA also says it ‘carefully considered public comments’ in its decision. The facts show otherwise. Over 63,000 of those comments—from a total of 72,000 submitted—opposed withdrawal of the rule. In comparison, USDA only received 50 comments in support. It is indefensible for the agency to show such a blatant disregard for the public’s stance.”
The final rule withdrawal is effective May 13, 2018, and can be found here.
–The Office of Congresswoman Chellie Pingree
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