USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) provides very useful information on their website. Check out Meat and Poultry Labeling Terms if you are at all curious what producer’s statements really mean.

Are you curious about the definitions of various terms used by the USDA?

Want to keep up with Recalls and Public Health Alerts? You can even sign up for email notifications when recalls or public health alerts are issued. They also offer Twitter feeds by State or U. S. Territory. Additionally, six of our government agencies united to jointly list recalls for consumer products, motor vehicles, boats, food, medicine, cosmetics and environmental products.

The USDA site provides a lot of information and if you find it difficult to locate exactly what you are looking for then Ask Karen provides information for consumers about preventing food-borne illness, safe food handling and storage, and safe preparation of meat, poultry and egg products. AskFSIS is for answers to questions about inspection-related policies, programs, systems and procedures.

To access the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) rules then check out Title 21 CFR Chapter 1 sub-chapter B (parts 100-169) Food For Human Consumption. As you might expect, this is not an easy read nor should it be. Shoddy operators work in the margins and with greater precision these definitions can narrow those margins. Unfortunately, as these definitions and resulting regulations expand it becomes more and more difficult for small entrepreneurs to enter the market. Additionally, much like our corporate tax code, lobbyists have pulled through a few loop holes here as well. The devil is in the detail.

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