2024 outlook: What's ahead for poultry producers in DC?

The farm bill, EPA assessments, FDA updates and more are all on the docket this year.

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Being an election year, all eyes are on Washington D.C. now more than ever. And to shed some light on what is soon to impact the poultry industry, the American Feed Industry Association’s vice president of public policy and education Leah Wilkinson presented “Charting the Course: Navigating Washington, D.C., for the Animal Food Industry” at this year’s International Production & Processing Expo (IPPE).

In addition to the presidential election in November, all 435 House representatives will be up for election as well as 34 senators and 11 state governors.

2024 farm bill

After congress received an extension, the former 2023 farm bill now has a fall 2024 deadline.

The extension is likely due to dysfunction in congress, according to principal at The Policy Group, Christian Richter, who also spoke about the farm bill at IPPE.

Areas of concern in the bill include the bill’s budget, changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP) Program and climate change.

Formaldehyde and the EPA

Commonly used in animal feed as an antimicrobial, especially against pathogens like Salmonella, formaldehyde is undergoing risk assessments conducted by three departments of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: the Office of Pesticide Programs, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, and Integrated Risk Information Systems.

FDA updates

One of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s updates that will impact poultry the most is the revision of the department’s definition of “farm.”

The new definition of a primary production farm is “an operation under one management in one general (but not necessarily contiguous) physical location devoted to the growing of crops, harvesting of crops, raising of animals (including seafood), or any combination of these activities.”

Under certain circumstances, a farm can also pack or hold raw agricultural commodities and pack, hold or manufacture processed food.

Alongside a primary production farm, a secondary activities farm “is an operation, not located on a primary production farm, devoted to harvesting, packing, and/or holding of raw agricultural commodities, provided that the primary production farm(s) that grows, harvests, and/or raises the majority of the raw agricultural commodities harvested, packed, and/or held by the secondary activities farm owns, or jointly owns, a majority interest in the secondary activities farm.”

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