After months of discussion, the U.S. Senate is set to vote on legislation aimed at restoring the U,S.P., the traditional red-bearded pork tenderloin, to the American diet.
On Thursday, the Senate voted on a bill that would repeal the federal government’s prohibition on interstate commerce in pork, cod and poultry.
That would leave a loophole for producers to import those products and sell them to consumers.
“We don’t want the pork to be a commodity that is going to end up in restaurants,” said Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo.
The bill passed the Senate by a vote of 34 to 13.
But it’s unlikely to reach the House, where Republicans have blocked many pork bills, including a bill to ban the importation of cod, since the GOP is controlling both chambers of Congress.
The debate over the ban, known as the “Porkgate” scandal, led the Senate to block a House bill last month to lift the ban.
Senate Democrats blocked a similar measure in 2017.
The Senate bill would end federal pork production, which began in 1862 and peaked in the 1970s, when the United States imported more than 70 million pounds of pork annually.
The U.s. is the world’s largest pork producer, producing nearly 7 million pounds annually, according to the U-S.
Department of Agriculture.
The U. S. also consumes about 6.3 million pounds a year from other countries.
In a letter to the Senate, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said the pork ban would be reversed by the House bill and could be restored to its former status under the omnibus appropriations bill that Congress passed in May.
The omnibus legislation provides $7.8 billion for federal pork spending over the next five years.
The spending includes $4.7 billion for the National Pork Producers Council and $2.4 billion for a new farm policy center to improve research and development for pork.
Pork is one of the largest domestic crops, accounting for about two-thirds of the U .s. crop production, and has been a source of national pride for generations.
The meat is often served with a fried egg, gravy, mashed potatoes and gravy-soup.
In 2018, the average cost of a pig is about $17,000, according the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.