USDA Proposes Withdrawing Organic Rule

December 17, 2017

The announced withdrawal by the USDA of the proposed Organic Rule is welcome news for United Egg Producers (UEP) and its farmer-members. USDA’s own analysis of the proposed rule estimates 45% of current organic egg production would be forced out of the organic business, and potentially impact the availability of organic eggs to US consumers. Based on that analysis there was only one logical conclusion –  withdraw the rule.    UEP has always supported a wide range of organic production methods, provided they meet the requirements of the FDA Egg Safety Rule and assure the health and well-being of hens. Consumer choice is important, and grocery shoppers are fortunate to have a wide variety of options in the egg case.

USDA reported on its website: “This proposed rule announces USDA’s intent to withdraw the January 2017 final rule and requests public comment on the proposed withdrawal. USDA has reviewed the OLPP final rule and is initiating this action based on the outcome of that review. Specifically, USDA finds that the OLPP final rule would exceed USDA’s statutory authority. Withdrawal of the OLPP rule is also independently justified based upon USDA’s revised economic assessment of the Rule. If this withdrawal is finalized, the existing organic livestock and poultry regulations now published at 7 CFR part 205 would remain effective.”

The announcement is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register on December 18th.