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H.515 Refines On-Farm Slaughtering Rules

An article in VTDigger covers the passing of a miscellaneous agriculture bill effecting on-farm slaughter, H.515, that quietly passed at the end of the legislative session. The bill addresses direct sales of on-farm slaughtered animals, what some described as "black market" sales, that were not meeting USDA Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) standards. 

VTDigger explains that "As a compromise for farmers who want to raise and sell no more than “10 swine, three cattle, 25 sheep or goats; or any combination … [but] no more than 3,500 pounds of live weight of livestock … per year,” the new law permits on-farm outdoor slaughter — that is, without a custom facility — but under more tightly regulated conditions. The farmer cannot “assist” in any way and the site must meet more stringent sanitary conditions that include being free of contaminants and designed to prevent water pollution and livestock or meat adulteration. The slaughter must be done by the buyer or an itinerant slaughterer hired by the buyer."

Read the full article by Kate Robinson, "New slaughtering rules are a way forward from Vermont's 'black market' in meat," in VTDigger