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White House pressured USDA on Canadian beef ?

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CattleAnnie

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DeLauro: Inspector General said White House pressured USDA on Canadian beef

by Pete Hisey on 2/24/05 for Meatingplace.com

Responding to questioning by Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), ranking minority member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, USDA Inspector General Phyllis Fong testified last week that USDA officials told investigators that they had been pressured by an administration source to widen the number of Canadian beef products allowed in to the United States in the wake of the border closure in 2003. Fong also said that meat industry sources heavily lobbied USDA staff on the same issue.

The IG's report (see Inspector General's report slams USDA, APHIS on Canadian beef, Meatingplace.com, Feb. 17, 2005) said that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service essentially contradicted its own risk assessment in broadening the definition of low-risk beef products to include tongue, cheek meat, and ground beef, among others.

"In reading the report, I found it strange that a fundamental change in policy was being made by an APHIS official with no directive from higher up," DeLauro tells Meatingplace.com. "In his memos, he even admitted that his decisions increased the possibility that higher risk products would enter the U.S. market."

In questioning Fong after her testimony Feb. 17 at a hearing, "what I got back was that two sources, one from the meat industry and one from inside the administration, had applied pressure" to USDA and APHIS staff, DeLauro says. Previous reports had indicated that the pressure had come from the former administrator of APHIS, Bobby Acord, who retired in April of last year. Fong and her investigator, Bob Young, appeared to back away from the administration statement under questioning from Republican members.

The Inspector General's report indicated that USDA and APHIS unilaterally reclassified products as low-risk, sometimes failed to enforce existing standards, and evidently allowed hundreds of millions of pounds of beef from plants that processed both cattle under 30 months and cattle over 30 months without having developed or implemented a plan to keep them segregated. The report also indicates that USDA was aware that the rules changes, most of which were only announced to the public and interested parties months after they were implemented, and allowed import of riskier materials than was true under the original definition of low-risk material.

Janet Reilly, a spokesperson for the American Meat Institute, denied undue pressure on APHIS. "We engaged in the same kind of participation that was always do in issues that affect us," she said. "That's in the notice and public comment stage. It's no secret that we favored then and favor now reopening the border."

The White House press office did not return a call for comment and the subcommittee has not yet posted transcripts of the question-and-answer period following Ms. Fong's prepared remarks.

The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture will hold a follow-up hearing with testimony from APHIS personnel on March 16.


Take care.
 

Sandhusker

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CattleAnnie said:
DeLauro: Inspector General said White House pressured USDA on Canadian beef

by Pete Hisey on 2/24/05 for Meatingplace.com

Responding to questioning by Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), ranking minority member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, USDA Inspector General Phyllis Fong testified last week that USDA officials told investigators that they had been pressured by an administration source to widen the number of Canadian beef products allowed in to the United States in the wake of the border closure in 2003. Fong also said that meat industry sources heavily lobbied USDA staff on the same issue.

The IG's report (see Inspector General's report slams USDA, APHIS on Canadian beef, Meatingplace.com, Feb. 17, 2005) said that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service essentially contradicted its own risk assessment in broadening the definition of low-risk beef products to include tongue, cheek meat, and ground beef, among others.

"In reading the report, I found it strange that a fundamental change in policy was being made by an APHIS official with no directive from higher up," DeLauro tells Meatingplace.com. "In his memos, he even admitted that his decisions increased the possibility that higher risk products would enter the U.S. market."

In questioning Fong after her testimony Feb. 17 at a hearing, "what I got back was that two sources, one from the meat industry and one from inside the administration, had applied pressure" to USDA and APHIS staff, DeLauro says. Previous reports had indicated that the pressure had come from the former administrator of APHIS, Bobby Acord, who retired in April of last year. Fong and her investigator, Bob Young, appeared to back away from the administration statement under questioning from Republican members.

The Inspector General's report indicated that USDA and APHIS unilaterally reclassified products as low-risk, sometimes failed to enforce existing standards, and evidently allowed hundreds of millions of pounds of beef from plants that processed both cattle under 30 months and cattle over 30 months without having developed or implemented a plan to keep them segregated. The report also indicates that USDA was aware that the rules changes, most of which were only announced to the public and interested parties months after they were implemented, and allowed import of riskier materials than was true under the original definition of low-risk material.

Janet Reilly, a spokesperson for the American Meat Institute, denied undue pressure on APHIS. "We engaged in the same kind of participation that was always do in issues that affect us," she said. "That's in the notice and public comment stage. It's no secret that we favored then and favor now reopening the border."

The White House press office did not return a call for comment and the subcommittee has not yet posted transcripts of the question-and-answer period following Ms. Fong's prepared remarks.

The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture will hold a follow-up hearing with testimony from APHIS personnel on March 16.


Take care.

What? The USDA is making policy changes due to "pressure from the meat industry"? Say it isn't so, SH! :???:
 

Mike

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I'm becoming kind of proud to be labeled as a "Blamer" because there's damn sure enough blame to go around!

I hope Johanns can straighten some things out. Any indications that he might?
 

mlsfarms

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Face it boys, we got sold out by the Buszcszcszchhh Whacker. He made some promises on his visit to Canada and is too proud/stubborn/dumb to back out. And now with his cuts to the Ag budget funding, he doesn't know where his bread comes from-let alone buttered. It's too bad we may never find out how good Johanns might have been. Besides, the Buszcszcszchhh Whacker is still looking for some WMDs. Next place he will want to look is in some manure pile in Manhattan(NY).
 
A

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Sandhusker: "What? The USDA is making policy changes due to "pressure from the meat industry"? Say it isn't so, SH!"

Oh listen to you!

Has USDA changed their position on allowing OTM cattle in from Canada after AMI filed their suit?

WELL WHY NOT SANHUSKER????? ACCORDING TO YOU, USDA CATERS TO THE LARGE PACKERS!


Sandhusker: "But, but, but.........."

Treed again!


NEXT!


~SH~
 

Sandhusker

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Read the article again, SH. After each sentence, pause and think of what was said.
 
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Anonymous

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~SH~ (previous): "has USDA changed their position on allowing OTM cattle in from Canada after AMI filed their suit?"

Sandhusker (diversion): "Read the article again, SH. After each sentence, pause and think of what was said."


AGAIN....

Has USDA changed their position on allowing OTM cattle in from Canada after AMI filed their suit? YES OR NO



Any guesses on what the response will be this time?

My guess is that it will probably fit into one of the following categories.........

1. Divertion

"Read the article again, SH. After each sentence, pause and think of what was said."


2. Deception

"AMI's suit may have been misinterpreted"


3. Denial

"I don't remember AMI filing a suit against USDA"


4. Discredit

"It's just a matter of time before USDA changes their position on that too"


Drum roll...........WHICH R-CALF CLONED RESPONSE WILL IT BE?????


~SH~
 

Sandhusker

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~SH~ said:
~SH~ (previous): "has USDA changed their position on allowing OTM cattle in from Canada after AMI filed their suit?"

Sandhusker (diversion): "Read the article again, SH. After each sentence, pause and think of what was said."


AGAIN....

Has USDA changed their position on allowing OTM cattle in from Canada after AMI filed their suit? YES OR NO



Any guesses on what the response will be this time?

My guess is that it will probably fit into one of the following categories.........

1. Divertion

"Read the article again, SH. After each sentence, pause and think of what was said."


2. Deception

"AMI's suit may have been misinterpreted"


3. Denial

"I don't remember AMI filing a suit against USDA"


4. Discredit

"It's just a matter of time before USDA changes their position on that too"


Drum roll...........WHICH R-CALF CLONED RESPONSE WILL IT BE?????


~SH~

Lets see..... I have to put on my R-CALF Clone Turban, tighten it up a few notches......make the call to Billings as I can not think for myself.....blame a few folks for something, ooops, don't have time for that now.......spread a few R-CAlf lies, OK, done that this morning.....I choose door #4! :lol: What do I win?
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Sandhusker: "Lets see..... I have to put on my R-CALF Clone Turban, tighten it up a few notches......make the call to Billings as I can not think for myself.....blame a few folks for something, ooops, don't have time for that now.......spread a few R-CAlf lies, OK, done that this morning.....I choose door #4!"

As the question goes unanswered AGAIN! Imagine that! LOL!

DIVERTION WINS AGAIN!


Same-O, Same-O!



~SH~
 

Sandhusker

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~SH~ said:
Sandhusker: "Lets see..... I have to put on my R-CALF Clone Turban, tighten it up a few notches......make the call to Billings as I can not think for myself.....blame a few folks for something, ooops, don't have time for that now.......spread a few R-CAlf lies, OK, done that this morning.....I choose door #4!"

As the question goes unanswered AGAIN! Imagine that! LOL!

DIVERTION WINS AGAIN!


Same-O, Same-O!

Check your glasses, SH. You asked a question and gave me 4 choices. I chose #4.



~SH~
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Check your glasses Sandhusker, it was a yes or no question. You took the door AGAIN.

Unanswered Question: " Has USDA changed their position on allowing OTM cattle in from Canada after AMI filed their suit? YES OR NO"


I knew you wouldn't answer it. You are of R-CALF integrity. I expect nothing less than avoidance.


~SH~
 

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