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e-CFR data is current as of December 2, 2020

Title 7Subtitle BChapter IISubchapter BPart 250Subpart C → §250.34

Title 7: Agriculture
Subpart C—Processing of Donated Foods

§250.34   Substitution of donated foods.

(a) Substitution of commercially purchased foods for donated foods. Unless its agreement specifically stipulates that the donated foods must be used in processing, the processor may substitute commercially purchased foods for donated foods that are delivered to it from a USDA vendor. The commercially purchased food must be of the same generic identity, of U.S. origin, and equal or better in all USDA procurement specifications than the donated food. Commercially purchased beef, pork, or poultry must meet the same specifications as donated product, including inspection, grading, testing, and humane handling standards and must be approved by the Department in advance of substitution. The processor may choose to make the substitution before the actual receipt of the donated food. However, the processor assumes all risk and liability if, due to changing market conditions or other reasons, the Department's purchase of donated foods and their delivery to the processor is not feasible. Commercially purchased food substituted for donated food must meet the same processing yield requirements in §250.33 that would be required for the donated food.

(b) Prohibition against substitution and other requirements for backhauled donated foods. The processor may not substitute or commingle donated foods that are backhauled to it from a distributing or recipient agency's storage facility. The processor must process backhauled donated foods into end products for sale and delivery to the distributing or recipient agency that provided them and not to any other agency. Distributing or recipient agencies must purchase end products utilizing donated foods backhauled to their contracted processor. The processor may not provide payment for backhauled donated foods in lieu of processing.

(c) Grading requirements. The processing of donated beef, pork, and poultry must occur under Federal Quality Assessment Division grading, which is conducted by the Department's Agricultural Marketing Service. Federal Quality Assessment Division grading ensures that processing is conducted in compliance with substitution and yield requirements and in conformance with the end product data schedule. The processor is responsible for paying the cost of acceptance service grading. The processor must maintain grading certificates and other records necessary to document compliance with requirements for substitution of donated foods and with other requirements of this subpart.

(d) Waiver of grading requirements. The distributing agency may waive the grading requirement for donated beef, pork or poultry in accordance with one of the conditions listed in this paragraph (d). However, grading may only be waived on a case by case basis (e.g., for a particular production run); the distributing agency may not approve a blanket waiver of the requirement. Additionally, a waiver may only be granted if a processor's past performance indicates that the quality of the end product will not be adversely affected. The conditions for granting a waiver include:

(1) That even with ample notification time, the processor cannot secure the services of a grader;

(2) The cost of the grader's service in relation to the value of donated beef, pork or poultry being processed would be excessive; or

(3) The distributing or recipient agency's urgent need for the product leaves insufficient time to secure the services of a grader.

(e) Use of substituted donated foods. The processor may use donated foods that have been substituted with commercially purchased foods in other processing activities conducted at its facilities.

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