WASHINGTON — Following decades of efforts by many state-inspected meat and poultry plants to gain government approval for interstate shipment of their products, the US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service has issued a final rule allowing interstate shipment of some state-inspected meat and poultry products. Until now, only federally inspected meat and poultry was allowed into interstate commerce.

“We’re excited to announce this new rule that offers smaller plants the opportunity to expand their market and sell their products to new customers,” said Al Almanza, administrator of the FSIS. “Allowing these state-inspected establishments to ship their products across state lines has the potential to expand rural development and jobs, increase local tax bases, strengthen rural communities, and ensure that food is safe for consumers.”

In participating states, state-inspected processors selected to take part in the program will be required to comply with all federal standards under the Federal Meat Inspection Act and the Poultry Products Inspection Act. The plants will receive inspection services from state inspection personnel that have been trained in the requirements of the FMIA and the PPIA.