Missouri passes new law defining ‘meat’

Is this a case of laws going too far, or is it an overdue ruling? That's the is it a case of laws gone too far... Or is it an overdue ruling? That's the question as Missouri puts a definition on the term 'meat.'

The State of Missouri just passed a law banning companies from labeling something as 'meat' if it didn't come directly from the flesh and muscles of livestock or poultry.

So, tofurkey labeled as meat? Not in Missouri. Lab-grown meat? Definitely not.

Missouri's cattle industry pushed for the newly-passed law. They say they want shoppers to know that they're getting meat when they buy something labeled as such, but it also, obviously, helps them corner the meat market.

We spoke with dietician Mira Dessy, who said this rule will probably just be confusing for shoppers. "Nut meat and coconut, those are referred to as 'meat.' That is proper usage. So I'm wondering how they expect to deal with that," Dessy said. The other is that there are currently a lot of investments in lab-grown meat that comes from stem cells, and so they want that to not be considered meat as well. They want it to only come from livestock or poultry. It`s going to be interesting to see if they can defend it, because there's already one lawsuit, and there are probably a couple more to come," she said.

Shoppers posting to social media don't seem confused with the law, just the reasoning behind it.

Food makers who do not stick to the rule could face a $1,000 fine and a year in prison. Four groups, including the ACLU and Tofurky, have filed a lawsuit against Missouri's new 'meat' law.