The proposal would classify companies that distribute spent grain to farms as animal feed manufacturers, possibly forcing them to dry and package the material before distribution.
The equipment and set up to do that would cost about $13 million per facility, said Scott Mennen, vice president of brewery operations at Widmer.
“That would be cost prohibitive,” Mennen said. “Most brewers would have to put this material in a landfill.”
The rule would affect brewers and distillers across the country. But it would also hurt consumers, said James Emmerson, executive brewmaster of Full Sail Brewing Co.
“Beer prices would go up for everybody to cover the cost of the equipment and installation,” said Emmerson.
“This is regulating a problem that doesn’t exist,” said Van Havig, masterbrewer of Gigantic Brewing Co. in Southeast Portland. “Did anyone bother to find out if there’s been a problem?”
The FDA is not aware of any, according to Daniel McChesney, director of surveillance and compliance in the FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine.
“We don’t know of any problems,” McChesney said. “But we’re trying to get to a preventative mode.”
So this is a regulation being passed to “make the food supply safer” even though there are no recorded problems with the current safety levels of the food. Okay.