MOSA provides our clients with much more than just certification.

Joe Pedretti

MOSA Client Services Director

Organic Livestock and Poultry Standards Proposal Rule Released

Organic Livestock and Poultry Standards Proposal Rule Released

The Organic Livestock and Poultry Standards (OLPS) proposed rule was announced by the USDA on August 5th with a Request for Comment published in the Federal Register on August 9th. Written comments are due midnight on October 11th. MOSA will submit comments urging the USDA to standardize organic livestock and poultry regulations and implement this widely supported animal welfare reform.

The proposed Organic Livestock and Poultry Standards (OLPS) clarifiesd living conditions, physical alterations, transportation and slaughter practices, and preventive healthcare practices for avian and mammalian livestock species.This proposed rule seeks to elaborate on current regulations. The original version of this rule, known as the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices (OLPP) was withdrawn from implementation in 2018 despite wide stakeholder support. The updated version of the proposed rule, reiterates the following:

  • Clarifies enclosed “porches” do not constitute outdoor access for poultry;
  • Sets maximum indoor and outdoor stocking densities to ensure poultry has sufficient space to engage in natural behavior;
  • Specifies that outdoor access for poultry must include soil;
  • Adds new requirements on transport of organic livestock to sale or slaughter;
  • Clarifies how organic slaughter facility practices and USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) regulations work together to support animal welfare;
  • Specifies which physical alteration practices are prohibited or restricted.

As you are aware, MOSA does not make the rules but we are required to ensure they are followed. When new rules are proposed MOSA’s Certification Management Team reviews the proposal asking ourselves a series of questions: How will this impact our clients? Does the rule level an otherwise unlevel playing field? Will the proposal strengthen consumer confidence and therefore increase support for organic agriculture and production? Is the implementation timeline practical?

Most of the changes this new regulation proposes to formalize were implemented through the Livestock OSP addendum and Livestock OSP updates that we put into place in 2018. While we expect there to be some impact we are hopeful that our proactive clarification of policies eases the implementation of this new rule should it become final.

The National Organic Program (NOP) is specifically requesting comments on what is an appropriate and feasible implementation timeframe for the proposed changes.

Communication to MOSA’s livestock clients, outlining the details of this new proposed rule has been sent. Please contact the MOSA office if you have questions or concerns but we also want to encourage you to write and submit your own comments. MOSA will submit comments and concerns; however, the NOP appreciates hearing from you - the ones who will be directly impacted by this new rule.

Use the following website address to access the proposed rule online:

All information can be found on the NOP website: