The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) rejected a petition filed by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) that would have required all meat and poultry processors to test products for the presence of COVID-19.

The petition, filed on May 18, requested that FSIS require all meat and poultry processing establishments to test products for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 and make those results publicly available. It also requested that FSIS require meat and poultry processing establishments report to local public health authorities weekly the number of COVID-19 cases discovered.

PCRM is known as a pseudo-medical group that advocates for vegan diets, and has ties to PETA.

“The actions requested in your petition would not contribute to FSIS’s public health mission to ensure that meat, poultry, and processed egg products are safe, wholesome, unadulterated, and properly marked, labeled and packaged,” FSIS assistant administrator Rachel Edelstein of the Office of Policy and Program Development said in a statement.

Additionally, the petition requested that FSIS establish and compel all meat and poultry products to carry a warning label and to distribute that warning label to all major retail facilities for placement at check-out counters.

“Public health and food safety experts have found no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with meat or poultry products,” Edelstein said. “Thus, we are denying your request to amend the safe handling labeling regulations because we believe the requested warning statement would cause meat and poultry products to be misbranded.”

The full FSIS response to the petition can be found here.