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FDA Backs Down on Spent Grain Rule

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  • FDA Backs Down on Spent Grain Rule

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is backing down from their proposed rule regarding the disposal of spent grain that ignited a huge response from brewers and triggered a ton of ink in the mainstream press. The FDA has indicated to numerous members of Congress that they will adjust the final proposal to take into account concerns from the brewing industry.

    The rule would have required brewers to prepare written food safety plans including expensive monitoring processes to ensure that spent grain had not come into contact with any harmful substances. Given the expense of the possible treatment of spent grains before sending to the farmer as animal feed, may brewers suggested it would be less costly to send it to the landfill.

    "I made clear to (FDA) Commissioner (Margaret) Hamburg when we spoke that this ridiculous rule would have been extremely damaging for upstate New York, harming both our burgeoning craft brew industry and farmers alike," Sen. Charles Schumer, a New York Democrat, said in a statement Thursday. "I am glad she realized that the proposed rule is misguided and that she is committed to protecting this win-win transaction."

  • #2
    FDA Spent Grains Update

    The FDA may no longer pursue a proposed regulation that would impose strict regulations on spent grain being sent from breweries to farmers as animal feed.

    "We've heard from trade groups and members of Congress, as well as individual breweries raising concerns that FDA might disrupt or even eliminate this practice…" Michael R. Taylor of the FDA explained on the FDA's official blog. "That, of course, would not make common sense, and we're not going to do it."

    However, Paul Gatza, Director of the Brewers Association stated in a Forum post that, “not said in the blog is the position that FDA still does not clearly grant brewers the exemption that the Brewers Association called for in our comments based on the clear language of the law. While some media portrayals are that FDA has ‘backed off,’ there remains a long way for FDA to go to reasonably address the situation.”

    The final verdict seems to still out on this issue. ProBrewer News will continue to update as new developments take shape.


    • #3
      FDA Posts Q&A

      The FDA has just posted a Q&A on their web site regarding this issue.

      It is located here.