By Kristin Espeland
Laramie, WY – By the end of this summer, the U-S-D-A could allow cattle producers to label beef as grass-fed. Earlier this month, the agency released a draft of its new grass-fed labeling standards which would require labeled meat to have been raised on 99 percent grass or forage. Northeastern Colorado rancher Sue Jarrett says the new label could boost business for smaller, independent ranchers who choose to pasture and feed their cattle grass and want to advertise that to consumers. But Jarrett says there aren't yet enough smaller meat processing plants to handle this business. The new labeling does not address antibiotic use which Jarrett says she favors for a separate label. The U-S-D-A is accepting public comment on the new standards until August.