REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio – The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) announced Monday that R&C Packing, Inc., of Bidwell, Ohio will become the state’s first business to slaughter livestock under the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Cooperative Interstate Shipment Program.
This will be the first facility in the country permitted to slaughter cattle, sheep, and goats and ship meat over state lines without needing a federal inspection. In addition to opening out of state markets for R&C Packing Inc., the move will also allow area livestock producers to better service customers out of state.
“Being able to ship our products anywhere in the United States will open up great opportunities for our customers that want to expand direct marketing possibilities of their personal products,” said Jamie Graham, owner of R&C Packing, Inc. “It allows us to compete on another level with larger processors and provide added services to customers that are typically not available to them. We are presently planning to expand our current facility and also our processing capabilities to accommodate larger volumes at this facility or another.”
The Cooperative Interstate Shipment Program allows small, state-inspected businesses with 25 or fewer employees to ship and sell meat products across state lines without requiring a federal inspection. Meat products produced in these establishments are inspected by the state, but are subject to the same inspection process as larger facilities. Prior to the establishment of this program by the 2008 Farm Bill, state-inspected businesses could only sell their products within their own state and switching to federal inspection often requires a large investment by the business.
“The department is proud to participate in a program that’s working to increase opportunities for the state’s small meat and poultry operations and our livestock and poultry producers,” said ODA Director David T. Daniels. “Ohio was the first state to launch this program in 2012 and now we continue to lead the nation with 11 meat and poultry processors who are participating.”
Anyone with questions on how to start or expand a meat processing business in Ohio should contact the department’s Division of Meat Inspection at 614-728-6260.