The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday
afternoon confirmed the effective date of April 27 for the final rule
banning cattle materials at a high risk of carrying bovine spongiform
encephalopathy from all animal feed.
The agency also established Oct. 26 as an extended date by which
renderers and packers must be in compliance with the rule, which was
initially published in the Federal
Register on April 25, 2008.
FDA had proposed delaying the April 27, 2009, effective date by two
months and allowed a week-long comment period after industry
organizations turned up the volume on concerns about the disposal of
prohibited cattle materials and difficulties in modifying operations to
comply with the rule. (See FDA
proposes to delay feed ban on Meatingplace, April 7, 2009.)
FDA said it received comments from more than 400 organizations and
individuals on the proposed delay of the effective date. In general,
opponents of the delay cited a heightened risk of BSE to U.S. consumers
and cattle herds and proponents of the delay cited the need for more
time to come up with alternative methods of disposal. The agency noted
that the delay would help address such concerns but did not signal any
intent to reconsider the final rule.
"In its rulemaking, FDA acknowledged that alternative disposal
methods for [Cattle Materials Prohibited from Animal Feed] and dead
stock cattle would be needed for a substantial volume of material that
would be diverted from animal feed use by the new requirements,"
the agency wrote in its confirmation notice. "Accordingly, the
rule provided a 12-month delayed effective date to allow sufficient
time to arrange for alternative disposal. Where services to remove
brain and spinal cord will not be available, such arrangements might
include composting dead stock cattle, or disposing of dead stock cattle
"To some extent, we believe the rendering, livestock, meat and
animal feed industries have addressed many of the compliance and
carcass disposal challenges and are prepared to meet the April 27,
2009, effective date of the final rule."
To read the entire notice, click here.