October 6, 2020

Consent Decree Against PA Miller’s Organic Farm For Avoiding Inspections

A consent decree has been issued against Miller’s Organic Farm of Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania for violating USDA laws by avoiding inspections and misbranding meat and poultry. In November 2019, the U.S. government permanently enjoined the company and its owner, Amos Miller, for obstructing federal health and safety oversight and from selling uninspected meat to the company’s nationwide “private membership association.”

Consent Decree Against PA Miller's Organic Farm For Avoiding Inspections

USDA inspectors and investigators went to the farm in December 2019 to assess compliance with the injunction. They found 2,000 pounds of fresh meat carcasses that Miller’s had slaughtered without federal inspection, in violation of the injunction. FSIS tagged the meat so it couldn’t be used or sold, but Miller’s voluntarily destroyed them.

FSIS fond more violations of the court’s permanent injunction in January 2020. Miller’s Organic Farm had 60 days to sell to its buyer’s club about 34,000 pounds of frozen meat-and-poultry product inventory that was already produced when the injunction was entered. FSIS found that Miller’s violated the injunction by failing to sell and ship the inventory.

On that same investigation, investigators found and detained 2,100 pounds of non-federally-inspected freshly slaughtered beef carcasses. Two days later, when FSIS investigators returned to MIller’s to detain this inventory, Mr. Miller again violated the injunction by initially denied them access to his facility.

On February 10, 2020, the U.S. filed a separate action to seize and condemn the meat. U.S. Marshals Service legally seized those meat and poultry articles but left them in place pending a condemnation hearing.

Miller’s acknowledges that it has violated the injunction and agrees to pay fines for denying access to inspectors, and will either adhere to procedures for distributing the frozen inventory or destroy it. They will also denature or destroy the fresh carcass meat if MIller’s can’t sell it to a pet food manufacturer, and will stop internet advertising their meat for sale until the products comply with federal and state laws.

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