The USDA has extended the public comment period for its proposed rule regarding revised organic livestock and poultry production standards.

The agency moved the deadline for comments to July 13. The original deadline was June 13.

Members of the poultry industry, including John Zimmerman, National Turkey Federation (NTF) board member, and Ron Truex, chairman of United Egg Producers (UEP) brought their concerns to Congress during recent agriculture committee hearings. Committee members were urged to press USDA to extend the comment period in order to make sure that sufficient information and feedback was received before moving forward with the new organic rule.

Sens. Pat Roberts and Debbie Stabenow, who respectively serve as chairman and ranking member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, and Reps. K. Michael Conaway and Collin Peterson, who respectively serve as chairman and ranking member of the House Agriculture Committee, in turn wrote to USDA, requesting a 60 day extension.

While the comment period was only extended 30 days, the committee leaders in a press release said they were still happy with the agency’s decision to grant the extension.

 “We are pleased the USDA acted immediately to allow producers, consumers, retailers and animal health experts more time to offer their comments on the proposed rules,” the lawmakers stated. “We will continue to work with the department to address the concerns being raised by our constituents.”

People wishing to make comments on the proposal can do so through the Federal eRulemaking Portal.