Statement from AAFCO Executive Director Austin Therrell

Champaign, IL (June 20) – On June 8, 2023, the Innovative Feed Enhancement and Economic Development (FEED) Act of 2023 was introduced in the U.S. Senate.

The bill, S. 1842, would amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and establish a regulatory pathway for a new category of novel feed additives, called Zootechnical Animal Food Substances (ZAFS), that work within the animal’s gut microbiome to increase production, food safety, and environmental benefits.

The new regulatory category established by the Innovative FEED Act will allow ingredients that have non-nutritive benefits to be regulated as food additives instead of new animal drugs, as was previously required under the Food and Drug Administration’s 1998 Policy and Procedures Manual Guide 1240.3605.

This approach will allow feed manufacturers to more clearly identify how their products may benefit consumers and will ultimately promote innovation and allow U.S. agriculture to remain competitive on the international stage.

The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) is an independent organization that provides ingredient definitions, label standards and laboratory standards for state and federal feed programs.

AAFCO members are also responsible for the inspection and regulation of feed ingredients, which would include ZAFS under the Innovative FEED Act.

“AAFCO is very supportive of the Innovative FEED Act and the modernization it will bring to the regulatory approval process. This proposal provides a pathway for products that have the opportunity to greatly impact the feed industry, and still provides the appropriate level of oversight to ensure safety and consumer confidence,” said Austin Therrell, AAFCO’s executive director.

AAFCO collaborates closely with the American Feed Industry Association (AFIA), on a wide range of issues related to animal feed and food safety.

AFIA has endorsed the Innovative FEED Act for the positive impact it would have on animal health, human food safety and the environment.