John Polk wrote: The Bed and Breakfast scenario is much different than having friends/family over for a meal.
Yep, that's right. My understanding is that non-paying guests are OK, paying guests aren't. But it sucks that people paying for an authentic farm experience aren't allowed to actually experience the products of the farm.
Home-grown chicken really is one of those experiences that money just can't buy!
Lots of folks in my neck of the woods are food criminals - we're rural, plenty of goats, lamb, cattle and chickens raised and no USDA approved meat processing plant in a hundred mile radius, so there's a fair amount of meat and cheese that changes hands without the gummint's blessing.
I suspect the phenomenon is becoming increasingly widespread across the US.
And regulators are becoming increasingly preposterous. Local farmers have told me that state regulators have hassled them for selling mixed salad greens at the farmers market, citing an increased risk of food poisoning.
For myself, when I contrast the process used by a small farmer or rancher who knows the right way to butcher and handles only a few animals per week with that of an agribusiness meat processing plant that processes several hundred animals an hour in an incredibly unsanitary and inhumane fashion, I feel a lot safer eating the meat processed by the small farmer, even though there was no USDA inspector breathing down his neck.
And many people feel the same way. So what the government is doing is not enhancing food quality, it is imposing needless burdens on small farmers and creating a black market in the process.
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
posted 8 years ago
The sad thing with the "inspected" slaughter/butcher facilities is that, once inspected and approved, the inspector will probably never visit them again (unless there is a reported problem). It's a "License to Steal".
posted 7 years ago
We became members of the Farm to Consumer Legal Defense fund not long ago and with membership comes the benefit of speaking with a lawyer specializing in this kind of thing. He told me there's a federal exemption for small scale producers that applies to poultry ONLY, if you produce less than 1,000 or 20,000 birds then you can slaughter and sell them directly to the consumer. He instructed us to label the dressed birds with "Exempted - P.L. 90-492"
Talks about "personal use" exemptions which that means you can't sell it to anyone.
Then there's a table listing various exemptions, including "personal use" and "producer-grower 1000 bird limit." Seems like if you keep records of who buys your birds, you raise and process the birds yourself on your farm, and you limit the birds to fewer than 20,000 a year, you can raise and kill and sell chickens to people - if your state adopts the exemptions, and I was told California is one of the states that has adopted them.
In North Carolina we can sell poultry meat from the farm, processed at the farm, as long as sanitary conditions are met, without inspection. Such meat can also be sold at Farmer's Markets. Following is the excerpt from the State Law:
Meat and Poultry
Small-scale producers who fall under the exemption (described below) are not required to register as meat and poultry handlers.
See Meat and Poultry Handler Requirements for more information.
List of Registered North Carolina Meat Handlers
Packaging, Labeling, and Marketing Meat and poultry may be sold fresh or frozen. Farmers selling at farmers' markets should check the market's rules governing the sale of meat and poultry, as some may only allow frozen product.
Product labels must include product name, statement of ingredients, inspection legend (applied by processor), net weight statement, farm name and address, and safe handling statement (applied by processor). The processing plant will apply the labels. If you want a custom label, you will need to work with your processor to get USDA approval. Verify that all your product is properly labeled before you leave the processing facility; otherwise you will not be able to sell it. You may not alter labels in any way, nor add any additional labels. Price and UPC stickers may be added by the retailer or vendor.
Meat and Poultry Handlers may not open packages, relabel products, repackage products, or apply net weights.
Exemptions for Small-scale Poultry Producers
Producer/Grower 1,000 Poultry Limit Exemption
This exemption from NCDA&CS law allows an individual to slaughter and/or process poultry of their own raising (on his or her premises) and sell the poultry products in intrastate commerce without mandatory (daily) inspection. To operate under the limited provisions of this exemption the individual must meet the five (5) requirements as stated in MPID Notice 08-10, titled “Poultry Exemption Requirements”.
Producer/Grower 20,000 Poultry Limit Exemption
This exemption from NCDA&CS law allows an individual to slaughter and/or process poultry (on his or her premises) that he/she raised and he/she may distribute the poultry products in intrastate commerce without mandatory (daily) inspection. To operate under the limited provisions of this exemption the individual must meet the nine (9) requirements as stated in MPID Notice 10-10, titled “Requirements for the Producer Grower 20,000 Poultry Exemption”.
The law permits poultry processed under this exemption to be sold at farmers' markets and to restaurants.
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I have seen local CL adds for pet meat rabbits or pet chickens. The adds are very specific that you are paying for a LIVE animal. The add goes on to say something to the extent of, if you wish for your pet animal to be cleaned and dressed we can do that for you as a free service. Be warned that there is no garantee on the viability of your animal if you choose this service, all sales are final, no returns.
I like to think the transaction goes like this:
Farmer: He's your pet chicken
(hands processed bird to customer)
Customer: Thanks! It looks dead.
Farmer: Yeah, I don't think he's going to make it. Not exactly sure why you wanted me to clean your pet chicken but to each his own. No returns.
Similar to is you sold a dog and offered to wash and cut it's fur first. Not bullet proof, but might be a loophole that's available to you.
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