“Clients in the food and agriculture sector can depend on me to speak their language and provide experienced counsel to navigate regulatory issues and provide vigorous representation.”

John G. Dillard

Principal, USDA Practice Head

John Dillard draws on his extensive practical and legal experience to provide knowledgeable and effective regulatory and litigation counsel to OFW Law’s food and agriculture clients. He also serves as General Counsel to several trade associations in the food and agriculture sector.

Food Safety and Labeling

John counsels numerous meat and poultry clients regulated by the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) as well as food manufacturers regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. John counsels clients in a variety of food safety and labeling matters, including:

  • Advising clients on inspection and enforcement matters arising under the Federal Meat Inspection Act, Poultry Products Inspection Act, Egg Products Inspection Act, and the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act
  • Representing clients in FSIS and FDA enforcement investigations as well as civil and criminal enforcement proceedings before USDA, FDA, and federal courts
  • Assisting FSIS and FDA-inspected clients with food recalls
  • Advising clients on compliance with the regulations promulgated under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). John has completed training to be a Preventive Controls Qualifixed Individual for both human and animal food facilities.
  • Advising food manufacturers, restaurants, and retailers on food labeling and advertising matters to assist clients in complying with labeling regulations and minimize the risk of labeling enforcement and consumer fraud actions

Feed and Pet Food Industry

John also has a robust animal food practice. He advises livestock and poultry feed and pet food manufacturers on compliance with FDA regulations, including Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP), Hazard Analysis, and Preventive Controls required under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). He advises feed and pet food clients on inspection, enforcement, and labeling matters. He also assists clients with animal food ingredient approval matters.

USDA Agricultural Marketing Service

John assists clients with numerous matters that are regulated by USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service. This includes:
  • Advising livestock and poultry dealers, stockyards (market agencies), packers and poultry processors on compliance with the Packers and Stockyards Act. John has also represented several clients in enforcement actions initiated by AMS’ Packers and Stockyards Division (formerly GIPSA).
  • Counseling clients on compliance with USDA’s National Organic Program regulations
  • Advising clients on USDA meat grading matters
  • Counseling clients on the USDA Process Verified Program


John also represents clients in litigation in state and federal civil matters and USDA administrative enforcement proceedings. He has litigated cases involving Clean Water Act disputes, livestock nuisance odor torts, Packers and Stockyards Act enforcement, Animal Welfare Act enforcement, biotech seed patenting, country-of-origin labeling requirements, and Native American agriculture. John also regularly serves as co-counsel in major food litigation to provide advise pertaining to FSIS and FDA regulations.

General Counsel

John also provides general counsel services to several food and agricultural trade associations. In this role, he provides advice on corporate governance, contract drafting and evaluation, antitrust, director fiduciary responsibilities, and employment matters.

Past Experience



University of Richmond - J.D. (2012)

Purdue University - M.S., Agricultural Economics (2007)

Virginia Tech - B.S., Animal and Poultry Sciences, Agricultural and Applied Economics (2005)

Bar Admissions


District of Columbia

Court Admissions

U.S. Dist. Court - D.C.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit

U.S. Supreme Court

Leadership & Community

John is an active member of the American Agricultural Law Association. He is also a prolific writer and speaker on legal and policy matters pertaining to food and agriculture. He writes a regular column for Farm Journal and National Provisioner.

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