Americans convinced the USDA’s long-standing ban on haggis — essentially, a large sack of savory pudding made from sheep lungs and other organ meat — is a gross injustice may soon have more to celebrate than just Robert Burns’s birthday. The feds are wrapping up “years” of negotiations with Scotland over the dish, and it looks like they plan to ease import restrictions for the first time since 1971.
That’s the year when haggis became officially frowned upon after the government ruled livestock lungs — necessary for the dish — aren’t “for use as human food.” This hurdle got higher in 1997, when the ban on lungs was extended to the whole animal after the U.K.’s mad-cow outbreak. But Scottish officials tell CNN the U.S. may lift the 1997 ban “during the first half of next year.” It’s a development that “could be colossal,” according to reps for haggis giant Macsween, adding the company is already prepping an American version.
This means that for better or worse, haggis’s time may happen. For those who are still squeamish, please remember that no less an authority than Anthony Bourdain has previously opined: “There is no more unfavorably reviled food on Earth than haggis. [But] its ingredients are in fact no more unusual, or bizarre, or unappetizing, than any hot dog you ever ate. How many anal glands are there in a chicken nugget?” Eat up!