Bipartisan “Real MEAT Act” Would Define “Beef” Federally
Reps. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) and Anthony Brindisi (D-N.Y.) have introduced the Real Marketing Edible Artificials Truthfully (MEAT) Act, which would “codify the definition of beef for labeling purposes, reinforce existing misbranding provisions to eliminate consumer confusion, and enhance enforcement measures available to the [U.S. Department of Agriculture] if the [Food and Drug Administration] fails to take appropriate action,” according to Marshall’s press release.
“The lack of any Federal definition of ‘beef’ or ‘beef products’ for the purposes of meat food product labeling has led some to begin marketing imitation products as meat or beef, creating the opportunity for marketplace confusion and consumer fraud that Congress originally charged the various Federal food regulatory agencies with the duty to prevent,” the bill’s text states. “Imitation products labeled as beef or as beef products create confusion in the marketplace. These products are in direct violation of the ‘Congressional Findings and Declaration of Policy’ authorized under section 2 of the Beef Research and Information Act (7 U.S.C. 2901) and undermine the integrity of that Act.”