It is the policy of the Congress to protect the consuming public from meat and meat food products that are adulterated or misbranded and to assist in efforts by State and other Government agencies to accomplish this objective. In furtherance of this policy—
The Secretary is authorized, whenever he determines that it would effectuate the purposes of this chapter, to cooperate with the appropriate State agency in developing and administering a State meat inspection program in any State which has enacted a State meat inspection law that imposes mandatory ante mortem and post mortem inspection, reinspection and sanitation requirements that are at least equal to those under subchapter I of this chapter, with respect to all or certain classes of persons engaged in the State in slaughtering cattle, sheep, swine, goats, or equines, or preparing the carcasses, parts thereof, meat or meat food products, of any such animals for use as human food solely for distribution within such State.
The Secretary is further authorized, whenever he determines that it would effectuate the purposes of this chapter, to cooperate with appropriate State agencies in developing and administering State programs under State laws containing authorities at least equal to those provided in subchapter II of this chapter; and to cooperate with other agencies of the United States in carrying out any provisions of this chapter.
Cooperation with State agencies under this section may include furnishing to the appropriate State agency (i) advisory assistance in planning and otherwise developing an adequate State program under the State law; and (ii) technical and laboratory assistance and training (including necessary curricular and instructional materials and equipment), and financial and other aid for administration of such a program. The amount to be contributed to any State by the Secretary under this section from Federal funds for any year shall not exceed 50 per centum of the estimated total cost of the cooperative program; and the Federal funds shall be allocated among the States desiring to cooperate on an equitable basis. Such cooperation and payment shall be contingent at all times upon the administration of the State program in a manner which the Secretary, in consultation with the appropriate advisory committee appointed under paragraph (4), deems adequate to effectuate the purposes of this section.
The Secretary may appoint advisory committees consisting of such representatives of appropriate State agencies as the Secretary and the State agencies may designate to consult with him concerning State and Federal programs with respect to meat inspection and other matters within the scope of this chapter, including evaluating State programs for purposes of this chapter and obtaining better coordination and more uniformity among the State programs and between the Federal and State programs and adequate protection of consumers.
The appropriate State agency with which the Secretary may cooperate under this chapter shall be a single agency in the State which is primarily responsible for the coordination of the State programs having objectives similar to those under this chapter. When the State program includes performance of certain functions by a municipality or other subordinate governmental unit, such unit shall be deemed to be a part of the State agency for purposes of this section.
If the Secretary has reason to believe, by thirty days prior to the expiration of two years after December 15, 1967, that a State has failed to develop or is not enforcing, with respect to all establishments within its jurisdiction (except those that would be exempted from Federal inspection under subparagraph (2)) at which cattle, sheep, swine, goats, or equines are slaughtered, or their carcasses, or parts or products thereof, are prepared for use as human food, solely for distribution within such State, and the products of such establishments, requirements at least equal to those imposed under subchapter I and IV of this chapter, he shall promptly notify the Governor of the State of this fact. If the Secretary determines, after consultation with the Governor of the State, or representative selected by him, that such requirements have not been developed and activated, he shall promptly after the expiration of such two-year period designate such State as one in which the provisions of subchapters I and IV of this chapter shall apply to operations and transactions wholly within such State: Provided, That if the Secretary has reason to believe that the State will activate such requirements within one additional year, he may delay such designation for said period, and not designate the State, if he determines at the end of the year that the State then has such requirements in effective operation. The Secretary shall publish any such designation in the Federal Register and, upon the expiration of thirty days after such publication, the provisions of subchapters I and IV shall apply to operations and transactions and to persons, firms, and corporations engaged therein in the State to the same extent and in the same manner as if such operations and transactions were conducted in or for commerce. Thereafter, upon request of the Governor, the Secretary shall revoke such designation if the Secretary determines that such State has developed and will enforce requirements at least equal to those imposed under subchapter I and subchapter IV of this chapter: And provided further, That, notwithstanding any other provision of this section, if the Secretary determines that any establishment within a State is producing adulterated meat or meat food products for distribution within such State which would clearly endanger the public health he shall notify the Governor of the State and the appropriate Advisory Committee provided by section 661 of this title of such fact for effective action under State or local law. If the State does not take action to prevent such endangering of the public health within a reasonable time after such notice, as determined by the Secretary, in light of the risk to public health, the Secretary may forthwith designate any such establishment as subject to the provisions of subchapters I and IV of this chapter, and thereupon the establishment and operator thereof shall be subject to such provisions as though engaged in commerce until such time as the Secretary determines that such State has developed and will enforce requirements at least equal to those imposed under subchapter I and subchapter IV of this chapter.
The provisions of this chapter requiring inspection of the slaughter of animals and the preparation of carcasses, parts thereof, meat and meat food products shall not apply to operations of types traditionally and usually conducted at retail stores and restaurants, when conducted at any retail store or restaurant or similar retail-type establishment for sale in normal retail quantities or service of such articles to consumers at such establishments if such establishments are subject to such inspection provisions only under this paragraph (c). For the purposes of this subparagraph, operations conducted at a restaurant central kitchen facility shall be considered as being conducted at a restaurant if the restaurant central kitchen prepares meat or meat food products that are ready to eat when they leave such facility and are served in meals or as entrees only to customers at restaurants owned or operated by the same person, firm, or corporation owning or operating such facility: Provided, That such facility shall be subject to the provisions of section 642 of this title: Provided further, That the facility may be subject to the inspection requirements under subchapter I of this chapter for as long as the Secretary deems necessary, if the Secretary determines that the sanitary conditions or practices of the facility or the processing procedures or methods at the facility are such that any of its meat or meat food products are rendered adulterated.
Whenever the Secretary determines that any State designated under this paragraph (c) has developed and will enforce State meat inspection requirements at least equal to those imposed under subchapters I and IV, with respect to the operations and transactions within such State which are regulated under paragraph (1), he shall terminate the designation of such State under this paragraph (c), but this shall not preclude the subsequent redesignation of the State at any time upon thirty days notice to the Governor and publication in the Federal Register in accordance with this paragraph, and any State may be designated upon such notice and publication at any time after the period specified in this paragraph whether or not the State has theretofore been designated upon the Secretary determining that it is not effectively enforcing requirements at least equal to those imposed under subchapters I and IV.
The Secretary shall promptly upon December 15, 1967, and periodically thereafter, but at least annually, review the requirements, including the enforcement thereof, of the several States not designated under this paragraph (c), with respect to the slaughter, and the preparation, storage, handling and distribution of carcasses, parts thereof, meat and meat food products, of such animals, and inspection of such operations and annually report thereon to the Committee on Agriculture of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry of the Senate in the report required under section 691 1 of this title.
As used in this section, the term "State" means any State (including the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico) or organized Territory.
(Mar. 4, 1907, ch. 2907, title III §301, as added Pub. L. 90–201, §15, Dec. 15, 1967, 81 Stat. 595; amended Pub. L. 98–487, §1, Oct. 17, 1984, 98 Stat. 2264; Pub. L. 103–437, §8(2), Nov. 2, 1994, 108 Stat. 4588.)
Section 691 of this title, referred to in subsec. (c)(4), was omitted from the Code.
In subsec. (c)(1), (4), "December 15, 1967" substituted for "enactment of the Wholesome Meat Act".
1994—Subsec. (c)(4). Pub. L. 103–437 substituted "Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry" for "Agriculture and Forestry".
1984—Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 98–487 inserted provisions relating to operations conducted at a restaurant central kitchen facility.
Section effective Dec. 15, 1967, see section 20 of Pub. L. 90–201, set out as a note under section 601 of this title.
Advisory committees in existence on Jan. 5, 1973, to terminate not later than the expiration of the 2-year period following Jan. 5, 1973, and advisory committees established after Jan. 5, 1973, to terminate not later than the expiration of the 2-year period beginning on the date of their establishment, unless in the case of a committee established by the President or an officer of the Federal Government, such committee is renewed by appropriate action prior to the expiration of such 2-year period, or in the case of a committee established by Congress, its duration is otherwise provided by law. See section 14 of Pub. L. 92–463, Oct. 6, 1972, 86 Stat. 776, set out in the Appendix to Title 5, Government Organization and Employees.
1 See References in Text note below.