Members of Congress Reintroduce the Strengthening Local Processing Act

Reps. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) , and Jim Baird (R-IN), and Sens. John Thune (R-SD) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced plans on Wednesday to reintroduce the Strengthening Local Processing Act.

The bill would would create a competitive grant program for small and very small establishments, state-inspected facilities, custom-exempt facilities, or new small-scale slaughter facilities.

It would also create two new grant programs for meat processing workforce training – one for colleges, universities, nonprofits, worker training centers, and others and one for small and very small establishments or nongovernmental organizations to offset the cost of training new meat processors

USCA President Justin Tupper issued the following statement:

“Independent processors play an important role in a competitive marketplace. 

“The Strengthening Local Processors Act would provide independent processors with both funding programs and technical assistance to help build a successful business. It creates an Institutional Career Training Program to work towards building a pipeline of talented individuals interested in making a career out of providing a high-quality and nutritious food source for their fellow Americans.

“Finally, the bill would also require the U.S. Department of Agriculture to encourage state participation in the Cooperative Interstate Shipment program, which would open access for interstate shipment of meat and poultry, something that isn’t always currently allowed. We look forward to working with Senators Brown and Thune and Representatives Baird and Pingree to advance this legislation through Congress.”

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