Kind announces legislation to expand meat markets

HUDSON - U.S. Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI) has announced new legislation he introduced to expand the markets for meat processing businesses in western Wisconsin and across the nation.
calendar icon 10 April 2007
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H.R. 1760, The Expanding Markets for Small Meat Processors Act would eliminate the ban on the interstate shipment of state-inspected meat, allowing small meat processors to increase their business and grow local economies.

Rep. Kind made the announcement with State Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) Secretary Rod Nilsestuen during a recent visit to RJ’s Meats, an award-winning small meat processor in Hudson.

“These unfair restrictions are severely hindering this industry’s ability to grow,” Rep. Kind said. “Trusting other nations, but not our own states, to ship meat across borders just doesn’t make sense. This bill will expand the market for Wisconsin products, increase competition and reduce prices for consumers. I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, and in the senate, to remove this harmful limit on area meat processors.”

States often develop their own meat inspection programs to provide the flexibility needed to accommodate small businesses. Although these inspection programs are equivalent to federal standards, currently there are restrictions on the interstate shipment of state-inspected meat.

No other agricultural commodity has this type of restriction, state-inspected milk, fruits, vegetables, grain and fish are all allowed free access to the national market. Currently foreign products have greater nation-wide meat market access than state-inspected meat.

Source: The Dunn County News

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