Lawmakers, advocates urge Biden to act on the organic animal welfare rule
Four Democratic lawmakers — Sens. Patrick Leahy of Vermont and Jon Tester of Montana and Reps. Chellie Pingree of Maine and Peter DeFazio of Oregon — have written to President Biden, asking him to reinstate the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices Final Rule (OLPP) that the Trump administration withdrew.
“We urge the administration to take this opportunity to collaborate with the organic industry by reinstating the final rule and restoring organic policymaking authority to its proper role,” said the lawmakers. Leahy and DeFazio are the original two authors of the Organic Foods Production Act, and Tester and Pingree are longtime organic farmers.
A broad coalition of organic advocates, including former Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan, also wrote White House Domestic Policy Council Director Susan Rice calling for the withdrawal of the rule to be reversed.
In addition, the Organic Trade Association, which earlier sued the USDA over the agency’s withdrawal of the OLPP rule, asked the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Monday for a 30-day extension in the deadline of a joint status report, saying the two parties have conferred on several occasions in the last 30 days regarding a “potential amicable resolution” and that “an additional stay is appropriate to continue their discussions … to resolve the litigation.”
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