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Alliance Urges USDA to Approve Organic Meat Labels While Waiting Upon National Organic Standards

A public awareness campaign in support of organic meat labeling was recently announced by a national consumer and industry coalition. Headed by Organic Valley, an industry leader in organic livestock and the largest organic farmers' cooperative in North America North America, third largest continent (1990 est. pop. 365,000,000), c.9,400,000 sq mi (24,346,000 sq km), the northern of the two continents of the Western Hemisphere. , the campaign's purpose is to urge USDA USDA, See United States Department of Agriculture.
 to lift its ban on labeling of organic meat before national organic standards are finalized, a process that may take another year or more. Current USDA internal policy prevents labeling of meat and processed eggs as organic, while all other foods under FDA FDA
Food and Drug Administration

FDA, See Food and Drug Administration.

FDA, the abbreviation for the Food and Drug Administration.
 jurisdiction are allowed to posses the organic label. Supporters of the call to action include organic livestock producers, retailers, trade associations and consumer groups, including: the Humane Society A humane society is a group that aims to stop animal suffering due to cruelty or other reasons. Examples
Examples of humane societies include: The Humane Society of the United States, Peninsula Humane Society, American Humane which was founded in 1877 as a network of
.; Mothers & Others for a Livable Planet; the National Campaign Against the Misuse of Pesticides; The Organic Alliance; Petaluma Poultry; Whole Foods; Wild Oats; the Organic Trade Association; and Bob Anderson
For other people named Bob Anderson, see Bob Anderson (disambiguation)

Bob Anderson (b. 19 May 1931, Hendon, London - d. 14 August 1967, Northampton) was a Grand Prix motorcycle road racer and racecar driver from England.
, head of Walnut Acres and chairman of USDA's National Organic Standards Board. Organic Trade Association Executive Director Katherine DiMatteo believes it is unfair of USDA to withhold organic meat and egg products labeling when all other products can carry an organic label. "The decision to withhold this label by the Food Safety and Inspection Service The United States Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is charged with ensuring that all meat, poultry, and processed egg products in the United States are safe to consume and accurately labeled.  of USDA has been arbitrary and capricious capricious adv., adj. unpredictable and subject to whim, often used to refer to judges and judicial decisions which do not follow the law, logic or proper trial procedure. A semi-polite way of saying a judge is inconsistent or erratic. ," she said. The campaign calls on USDA to immediately approve labeling for the organic livestock industry utilizing the present organic certification Organic certification is a certification process for producers of organic food and other organic agricultural products. In general, any business directly involved in food production can be certified, including seed suppliers, farmers, food processors, retailers and restaurants.  system. As well, the organic meat label, reflecting existing organic standards, would provide an interim solution until the national standards for organic certification received final approval. The coalition says approval of interim labeling would: allow consumers to make informed food choices based on full information; permit the American organic meat industry to pursue all organic markets; and enable organic meat, poultry and egg producers to compete globally. These same products are organically certified and labeled in Europe and nations around the world, and the coalition says this represents an unfair advantage over U.S. organic livestock producers. A spokesperson for the National Cattleman's Beef Association was not aware of the campaign and as such did not have any comment as of press time. Sales in the organic food industry are pegged at $3.5 billion with a growth rate of 20 percent expected to occur every year. USDA officials project a fourfold fourfold

1. having four times as many or as much

2. composed of four parts


by four times as many or as much

Adj. 1.
 increase in the next decade. Additionally, sales have steadily increased by 20 to 26 percent each year over the past seven years as consumers continue to prove that organic is not a fad, but a way of life. Some reasons to embrace organic food is to avoid possible carcinogenic-inducing pesticides and herbicides in foods and ground water, and food safety. Consumers are shopping more consciously wanting to know where their produce has come from and where it has been before being served at their dinner table.
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Publication:Food & Drink Weekly
Article Type:Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 22, 1998
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