Poultry Industry Blasts Proposed GIPSA Rule, Urges Agency to Withdraw ItWASHINGTON  (Food-News.net)  A massive regulation proposed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on the production and marketing of poultry and livestock is unconstitutional, unsupported by any meaningful economic analysis, and is in defiance of court rulings and Congressional mandates, the poultry industry said in comments filed with the agency today. The proposed regulation should be withdrawn and rewritten, the industry said.

The industry’s comments and a supporting economic study are posted to the web site www.nationalchickencouncil.com

“The proposed rule is ill-advised, exceeds GIPSA’s statutory authority, and, for some provisions, is unconstitutionally vague,” said a 45-page letter signed by George Watts, president of the National Chicken Council, and John Starkey, president of the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association. “GIPSA fails to provide an adequate justification for imposing such sweeping and detrimental changes to the poultry industry and does not explain corresponding benefits to counterbalance the hundreds of millions of dollars of detrimental effects this proposal will have on the U.S. economy.”

The industry comments said the proposed rule is unconstitutional because it has so many vague and undefined terms that people and companies who have to comply with the rule will not know what is illegal and what’s not.

The industry comments also objected to the changes proposed by GIPSA in the so-called “tournament” system of compensation for poultry growers, in which more efficient farmers are paid premiums based on their performance.

“The result would be increased production costs for poultry dealers coupled with a decreasing incentive for growers to deliver high quality chickens because compensation would not be tied to performance or quality,” the comments said.

GIPSA should withdraw the rule as proposed and rework it to meet the Farm Bill mandate, the industry said.

The National Chicken Council, Washington, D.C., represents integrated chicken producer-processors, accounting for more than 95 percent of the chicken sold in the United States.

The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, Tucker, Georgia, is the world’s largest poultry organization, whose membership includes producers of broilers, turkeys, ducks, eggs and breeding stock, as well as allied companies

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