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Trump's USDA Is Killing Rules That Organic Food Makers Want

The organic industry has sought out government oversight to reassure consumers. Now some worry that deregulation could chip away at that confidence.

Regulation isn’t a dirty word to makers of organic food.

So they’re pushing back against the Trump administration, which has killed off a slate of proposed regulatory changes for raising and manufacturing organic products after coming to power promising to remove “job-killing regulations.” In recent months, shelved proposals have included those covering animal welfare, the manufacture of pet food and beekeeping.

Stringent regulations are crucial to maintaining consumer confidence in the organic label that the U.S. Department of Agriculture oversees, according to many producers. They also help manufacturers command premium prices. Even some traditional food giants, including Perdue Farms and General Mills, have made the case for certain new regulations.

The egg business—already rife with consumer confusion over marketing claims such as “pasture-raised” and “cage-free”—may feel a particular impact from the administration’s actions.

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