Strengthening Local Processing Act
What it does
If Congress passes it, the Strengthening Local Processing Act would provide support to America’s small meat and poultry processors and help strengthen and streamline their operations. The bill would also give small meat processors more access to information that is critical to food safety planning, allow for more inspector-approved meat products to be sold across state lines, and funnel federal dollars toward training, education, and technical assistance grants. Ultimately, the bill increases processing and enhances opportunities for local producers, helping small slaughterhouses and butchers grow their businesses and deliver quality, locally raised meat.
Specifically, this bill would:
- Increase the federal cost share for state facility inspections from 50 to 65%
- Increase the federal cost share for Cooperative Interstate Shipment (CIS) facilities from 60 to 80%, encouraging more states to operate state inspection programs and participate in CIS.
- Create a competitive grant program for small and very small establishments, state inspected facilities, custom exempt facilities, or new small-scale slaughter facilities to help increase processing capacity.
- Create two new grant programs for meat processing and workforce training – one for colleges, universities, nonprofits, worker training centers, and others to establish or expand meat processing training program and one for small and very small establishments or nongovernmental organizations to offset the cost of training new meat processors.
Who supports this bill?
The Strengthening Local Processing Act is a bipartisan, bicameral bill, which means that it has some support in both the Senate and the House of Representatives, as well as support among Republicans and Democrats. Senators John Thune and Sherrod Brown and Representatives Chellie Pingree and Jim Baird introduced this bill. In the Senate, this bill is referred to as S.354 and these Senators are already supporting the bill. In the House, this bill is referred to as H.R.945 and these Representatives are already supporting the bill.
This bill is endorsed by the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, among other farming organizations.
Want to support this bill?
If your Senators and House Representative aren’t already on the list of cosponsors for the bill:
- Ask your two Senators to “cosponsor the Strengthening Local Processing Act, S.354.”
- Ask your House Representative to “cosponsor the Strengthening Local Processing Act, H.R. 945.”
If your elected officials are already supporting the Strengthening Local Processing Act, you can always contact them to thank them and help spread the word among your networks.
If you’d like to learn more about the Strengthening Local Processing Act, you can:
- Find instructions for calling or writing your Senators and Representative (tip: enter your address)
- Track the bill’s progress on Congress.gov or GovTrack
- Learn why lawmakers support this bill (Senator John Thune press release and Representative Chellie Pingree press release)
- Read the full bill text
See more bills worthy of your support in the 2023 Farm Bill.