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USDA/FSIS RIN: 0583-AD54 Publication ID: Fall 2015 
Title: Requirements for the Disposition of Non-Ambulatory Disabled Veal Calves 

Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is developing final regulations to amend the ante-mortem inspection regulations to remove a provision that permits establishments to set apart and hold for treatment veal calves that are unable to rise from a recumbent position and walk because they are tired or cold (9 CFR 309.13(b)). The regulations permit such calves to proceed to slaughter if they are able to rise and walk after being warmed or rested. FSIS proposed to require that non-ambulatory disabled (NAD) veal calves that are offered for slaughter be condemned and promptly euthanized. The existing regulations require that NAD mature cattle be condemned on ante-mortem inspection and that they be promptly euthanized (9 CFR 309.3(e)). FSIS believes that prohibiting the slaughter of all NAD veal calves would improve compliance with the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act of 1978 (HMSA), and the humane slaughter implementing regulations. It also would improve the Agency's inspection efficiency by eliminating the time that FSIS inspection program personnel (IPP) spend re-inspecting non-ambulatory disabled veal calves.

Agency: Department of Agriculture(USDA)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: No 
CFR Citation: 9 CFR 309   
Legal Authority: Federal Meat Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 601 et seq.)   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need:

Removing the provision from 9 CFR 309.13(b) would eliminate uncertainty as to what is to be done with veal calves that are non-ambulatory disabled because they are tired or cold, or because they are injured or sick, thereby ensuring the appropriate disposition of these animals. In addition, removing the provision in 9 CFR 309.13(b) would improve inspection efficiency by eliminating the time that FSIS IPP spend assessing the treatment of non-ambulatory disabled veal calves.

Summary of the Legal Basis:

21 U.S.C. 603 (a) and (b)


The Agency considered two alternatives to the proposed amendment: the status quo and prohibiting the slaughter of non-ambulatory disabled "bob veal," which are calves generally less than one week old.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits:

If the rule is adopted, non-ambulatory disabled veal calves will not be re-inspected during ante-mortem inspection. The veal calves that are condemned during ante-mortem inspection will be euthanized. The estimated annual cost to the veal industry would range between $2,368 and $161,405. The expected benefits of this proposed rule are not quantifiable. However, the rule would ensure the humane disposition of the non-ambulatory disabled veal calves. It also would increase the efficiency and effective implementation of inspection and humane handling requirements at official establishments.



Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  05/13/2015  80 FR 27269   
NPRM Comment Period End  08/12/2015 
Final Action  03/00/2016 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No  Government Levels Affected: None 
Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Dr. Daniel L Engeljohn
Assistant Administrator, Office of Policy and Program Development
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
Room 402 Cotton Annex Building, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., 349-E JWB,
Washington, DC 20250
Phone:202 205-0495
Fax:202 720-2025