The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has updated its guidelines on the documentation needed to support animal-raising labeling claims, which include “Raised Without Antibiotics,” “Organic,” “Grass-Fed,” “Free-Range” and “Raised with the use of hormones.”

Among other things, the agency requires the following information to support such claims: (i) “a detailed written description explaining the controls used for ensuring that the raising claim is valid from birth to harvest or the period of raising being referenced by the claim”; (ii) “a signed and dated document describing how the animals are raised (e.g., vegetarian-fed, raised without antibiotics, grass-fed), to support that the specific claim made is truthful and not misleading”; (iii) “a written description of the product-tracing and segregation mechanism from time of slaughter or further processing through packaging and wholesale or retail distribution”; (iv) “a written description for the identification, control, and segregation of non-conforming animals or products”; and (v) “if a third party certifies a claim, a current copy of the certificate.”

The agency will accept comments on the new guidelines until December 5, 2016. See Federal Register, October 5, 2016.