The National Bison Association (NBA) has petitioned the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) to include bison in the agency’s generic labeling system.

“The NBA and its members currently encounter significant delays associated with the FSIS review and approval of routine labeling materials,” the petition read, “due to the fact that their establishments, and other establishments receiving voluntary federal inspection services from FSIS, are currently unable to obtain generic approval status for such materials.”

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An American bison stands on rangeland in the West. 

In an attached letter, President Bob Dineen of Rocky Mountain Natural Meats claims the six to eight weeks it takes for USDA to process label requests have cost him business.

The petition states that the NBA believes this issue may be resolved through a simple modification to the FSIS labeling regulation.

Bison are currently classified as an “exotic species” by FSIS under a voluntary inspection program.

This disqualifies the species from utilizing the faster option of a generic labeling system available to other meat products.

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