Renderers Now Required to Keep Records Longer

The United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has issued a final rule that impacts rendering facilities. This rule was proposed in July 2008 and the National Renderers Association (NRA) commented at that time. Although APHIS acknowledged some of industry’s comments, it has now adopted the proposed rule as final with few changes.

Renderers are impacted as they are required to maintain records for two or five years, depending on type of livestock collected. Under current Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules, renderers are required to keep these records for one year. In addition, rendering facilities will now need to enter into an approved written agreement with APHIS to keep these records.

The final rule’s summary from the Federal Register states, “We are amending the regulations regarding the interstate movement of livestock to require approved livestock facilities and listed slaughtering and rendering establishments to maintain certain records for five years. Currently, approved livestock facilities are required to retain certain records for two years, and there are no record retention provisions that apply to listed slaughtering and rendering establishments. Requiring the retention of certain records for five years will allow us to trace the prior movements of diseased livestock further into the past than is currently possible, thus providing the opportunity to locate potentially infected or exposed livestock that might otherwise remain unidentified.

“We are also requiring the operators of slaughtering and rendering establishments to sign listing agreements to document their agreement to comply with the requirements of the regulations for listed slaughtering and rendering establishments. Such agreements are currently required for approved livestock facilities, but not for slaughtering and rendering facilities. This change will eliminate that inconsistency.”

APHIS acknowledges in the rule’s preamble that FDA also requires renderers to keep similar records for one year (NRA had commented that the APHIS rule should be consistent with the FDA rule already in place). APHIS states that they are requiring the same records as FDA, but are requiring they be kept longer for the purposes of animal disease investigations.

Livestock, slaughtering, and rendering facilities are now required to keep weight tickets, sales slips, and records of origin, identification, and destination (i.e., dead stock pick-up route logs or rendering raw material receiving logs) for these periods: poultry and swine – at least two years; cattle, bison, sheep, goats, cervids, and equines – at least five years.

Nothing in the final regulation addresses “shoddy composting operations, illegal dumping of carcasses, and other ill-advised methods of carcass disposal that endanger animal health” as was pointed out in NRA comments to the proposed regulations in 2008.

All in all, NRA doesn’t see the new regulations causing major concern, just that renderers need to keep the same records for a longer time.

The final rule is available at

June 2013 RENDER | back