Like Numerous Other States, Kansas Bill Would Prohibit Labeling Plant-Based Products as “Meat” Without Disclaimer
On January 13, 2020, Kansas joined the growing number of states that have introduced or enacted legislation that prohibit the marketing of a product as “meat” if it is not derived from livestock or poultry. HB 2437 would amend the Kansas Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to prohibit the use of identifiable meat terms on labels or in advertisements of meat analogs without either an accompanying disclaimer that the product does not contain meat or the inclusion of the word “imitation” before the name of the meat food product being imitated.
If enacted, a product would be deemed misbranded if labeled or advertised with any of the following terms but without a disclaimer or “imitation” qualifier: meat, beef, pork, poultry, chicken, turkey, lamb, goat, jerky, steak, hamburger, burger, ribs, roast, bacon, bratwurst, hot dog, ham, sausage, tenderloin, wings, breast and other terms for food that contain any meat, meat food product, poultry product or poultry food product.
HB 2437 was referred to the Kansas Legislature’s Committee on Agriculture, which held a hearing about the bill on January 23. The bill was introduced by State Representative Ron Highland with the support of the Kansas Livestock Association.
As our readers are aware, since 2018, 26 states have introduced similar labeling bills, many of which have been challenged in court. For instance, Mississippi, Missouri, and Arkansas have all faced legal battles over their respective plant-based meat labeling laws. Should HB 2437 become law, it is possible Kansas may find itself facing similar challenges.