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Resolution 2009-3

Resolution Urging the Re-examination of the Rules Regarding the Disposal of Animal Remains.

WHEREAS: the production of milk, meat and fiber, as well as, the equine industry are essential sectors of agriculture in the United States; and

WHEREAS: regardless of how well animals are managed, some will die from a variety of causes; and normal processing of meat animals results in animal remains; and

WHEREAS: Cattle slaughterers already remove the brain and spinal cord in accordance with existing U.S. Department of Agriculture regulations that require removal of specified risk materials (SRMs) in cattle 30 months of age and older processed for human food. Under the proposed addition to 21 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 589.2000, slaughter facilities will need to separate the brain and spinal cord from the rest of the SRMs if the animal is 30 months of age or older and the material is going to be rendered. Even though slaughter facilities are not regulated and inspected by FDA, renderers will require their suppliers to have procedures and records in place to meet the new FDA requirements to ensure they are in compliance.

WHEREAS: this added level of requirement poses unintended consequences with concern that rendering companies may stop picking up dead cattle and that higher fees will discourage farmers from calling a rendering company when an animal dies. The result could be dead cattle that are illegally dumped; and

WHEREAS; in advance of the implementation of this regulation, many renderers have already ceased to collect and process animal remains; and

WHEREAS; a lack of a viable, affordable and environmentally sound process for the disposal of animal remainswill result in a severe economic challenge for animal agriculture operations, and potentially create water quality issues;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED; that State Agricultural and Rural Leaders urge Congress and the administration to delay implementation of the new section of 21 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 589.2000 for a minimum of six months, in order to re-examine the issue of carcass disposal and to create a system that meets the needs of producers, processors, renderers and the general public; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED:  that a copy of this resolution be sent to The United States Congress, Secretary of Agriculture, and the agriculture committees of the state legislatures.