Legislature Dodges Federal Meat Shutdown

On Monday, October 23, the Maine Legislature met in an emergency special session in part to address the threat from the USDA to rescind Maine’s contract to provide State Inspection of meat and poultry. This would have severely restricted Maine’s capacity to process any meat locally, potentially limiting the entire industry to a single slaughterhouse. This emergency was caused by the passage, in June of LD725 — which was passed and signed by the Governor in June — that allowed citizens to sell unregulated food products in towns that had passed ordinances stating that, often referred to as “Food Sovereignty Ordinances.”

Luckily both houses of the Legislature voted to approve LD1648 altering the language of LD725 specifically stating that all Maine meat processors had to comply with state and federal regulation regardless of local ordinances enacted by towns and cities.

The Guild public testimony at that public hearing can be found here.

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