The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Agricultural Marketing Service’s Non-Hormone Treated Cattle (NHTC) Program has been in effect since 1999 when the European Union (EU) and the United States agreed to quality control measures in the trade and export of non-hormone treated beef, including veal. USDA’s Audit, Review, and Compliance (ARC) Branch conducts assessments to verify that the production of non-hormone treated cattle meet the specified product requirements of the NHTC Program guidelines for export to the EU. The ARC Branch verifies that non-hormone treated cattle are grown in approved farms/feedlots and delivered to slaughter establishments with appropriate shipping documentation; cattle are segregated at the slaughter establishment and handled in a fashion that ensures that they are not commingled with other animals; and, tissue samples from non-hormone treated cattle are collected at slaughter and analyzed. Production companies that are interested in being certified as an approved NHTC Program provider, must submit a written quality management system manual outlining the policies and procedures employed to ensure effective quality control compliance in the slaughter production process of non-hormone treated cattle. The compliance program is reviewed and certified through independent, third party audits conducted by the ARC Branch.
All U.S. companies that process and supply non-hormone treated cattle (including beef and veal) for export to the European Union.