USDA Defines Organic Label

US - The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), an expert advisory panel to the USDA’s National Organic Program, has made it clear that organic agriculture should not allow the use of cloned animals or their offspring in the production of organic food.
calendar icon 24 April 2007
clock icon 2 minute read
The NOSB voted at their spring meeting in Washington, D.C., to exclude cloned animals, their offspring, and any food products from cloned animals from the organic sector.

“This is a victory for farmers, consumers and retailers who want to protect organic food and agriculture from a highly controversial and experimental technology,” said Will Fantle of The Cornucopia Institute, a farm policy and organic watchdog group. “This vote seeks to plant a flag squarely in the center of the organic food sector, declaring it off limits to cloning while providing consumers a clear choice in the marketplace,” Fantle added.

The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced last December that they were ready to approve the commercialization of cloning in livestock agriculture and indicated that they would not seek any identifying labels on cloned meat, dairy and other food products sold in the nation’s grocery stores. (The FDA has extended their public comment period on the cloned food recommendation to May 3. A sample letter to the FDA can be found at

During its three-day meeting, NOSB members wrestled with language aimed at keeping cloning out of organics. Kevin Engelbert, vice-chair of the NOSB’s Livestock Committee and an organic dairy farmer from the state of New York, pressed hard for immediate and decisive action on the controversial technology. During the Board’s deliberations, Engelbert said “This is the time to make a strong statement.” He offered precise language that was adopted by the NOSB to address cloning and the issue of offspring from cloned animals.

Source: The Prairie Star
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