Agricultural Marketing Service – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

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Designation for the Aberdeen, South Dakota; Hastings, Nebraska; and Missouri Areas
Document Number: 2017-27061
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-12-15
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
AMS is announcing the designations of Aberdeen Grain Inspection, Inc. (Aberdeen); Hastings Grain Inspection, Inc. (Hastings); and the Missouri Department of Agriculture (Missouri) to provide official services under the United States Grain Standards Act (USGSA), as amended. The realignment of offices within the U.S. Department of Agriculture authorized by the Secretary's Memorandum dated November 14, 2017, eliminates the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyard Administration (GIPSA) as a standalone agency. The grain inspection activities formerly part of GIPSA are now organized under the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).
Rules of Practice and Procedures To Formulate or Amend a Marketing Agreement, a Marketing Order, or Certain Research and Promotion Orders
Document Number: 2017-26718
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-12-11
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is adopting a final rule to amend the definition of ``judge'' in the rules of practice and procedure to formulate or amend a marketing agreement, marketing order, or certain research and promotion orders. The new definition adds a presiding official appointed by the Secretary, as well as an administrative law judge, as an official who may preside over the rulemaking hearing.
Milk in the Florida Marketing Area; Supplemental Notification of Hearing
Document Number: 2017-26717
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-12-11
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
A public hearing is being held, on an emergency basis, to consider a proposal submitted by Southeast Milk, Inc., Dairy Farmers of America, Inc., Premier Milk, Inc., Maryland and Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative Association, Inc., and Lone Star Milk Producers, L.C. This supplemental notice extends the hearing from December 12, 2017, through December 14, 2017, in order to provide adequate public notification.
Milk in the Florida Marketing Area; Notification of Hearing
Document Number: 2017-26632
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-12-11
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
A public hearing is being held, on an emergency basis, to consider a proposal submitted by Southeast Milk, Inc., Dairy Farmers of America, Inc., Premier Milk, Inc., Maryland and Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative Association, Inc., and Lone Star Milk Producers, L.C. The proposal seeks a temporary supplemental charge on Class I milk to provide emergency reimbursement to handlers and producers for costs incurred as a result of market disruptions stemming from Hurricane Irma in September 2017 which caused extensive damage in the United States.
Tomatoes Grown in Florida; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-26373
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-12-11
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the Florida Tomato Committee (Committee) for a decrease in the assessment rate established for the 2017-18 and subsequent fiscal periods of tomatoes grown in Florida, handled under the marketing order (Order). The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated. This proposed rule also makes administrative revisions to the subpart headings to bring the language into conformance with the Office of Federal Register requirements.
United States Standards for Grades of Carcass Beef
Document Number: 2017-26273
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-12-06
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Agricultural Marketing Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture is revising the United States Standards for Grades of Carcass Beef (beef standards) to allow dentition and documentation of actual age as additional methods of classifying maturity of carcasses presented to USDA for official quality grading.
Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; Establishment of Reporting Requirements and New Information Collection
Document Number: 2017-25738
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-12-04
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule invites comments on the establishment of reporting requirements under the Federal marketing order for pecans (Order). These reporting requirements would enable collection of information from handlers on: Pecans received; pecans purchased outside the United States; shipments and inventory of pecans; pecans exported by country of destination; and pecans exported for shelling and returned to the United States. This information would be used to provide important statistical reports to the industry, meet requirements under the Order, and to help guide future marketing efforts. This proposal also announces the Agricultural Marketing Service's intention to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget of a new information collection.
Oranges and Grapefruit Grown in the Lower Rio Grande Valley in Texas; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-25737
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-12-04
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the Texas Valley Citrus Committee (Committee) to decrease the assessment rate established for the 2017-18 and subsequent fiscal periods from $0.09 to $0.02 per 7/10-bushel carton or equivalent of oranges and grapefruit handled under the Marketing Order (Order). The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated. This proposed rule also makes administrative revisions to the subpart headings to bring the language into conformance with the Office of Federal Register requirements.
Marketing Order Regulating the Handling of Spearmint Oil Produced in the Far West; Revision of the Salable Quantity and Allotment Percentage for Class 3 (Native) Spearmint Oil for the 2017-2018 Marketing Year
Document Number: 2017-25965
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-12-01
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the Far West Spearmint Oil Administrative Committee (Committee) to revise the quantity of Class 3 (Native) spearmint oil that handlers may purchase from, or handle on behalf of, producers during the 2017-2018 marketing year, which began on June 1, 2017. This proposal would increase the Native spearmint oil salable quantity and the allotment percentage. The Committee recommended this action for the purpose of avoiding extreme fluctuations in supplies and prices and to help maintain stability in the Far West spearmint oil market. This proposal also contains a formatting change to subpart references to bring the language into conformance with the Office of the Federal Register requirements.
Walnuts Grown in California; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-25736
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-11-28
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is adopting, as a final rule, without change, an interim rule that implemented a recommendation from the California Walnut Board (Board) to decrease the assessment rate established for the 2017-18 and subsequent marketing years from $0.0465 to $0.0400 per kernelweight pound of assessable walnuts. The Board is comprised of growers and handlers of walnuts and locally administers the Marketing Order that regulates the handling of walnuts grown in California. The Board also has a public member who has no financial interest in walnut production or handling.
Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; Establishment of Reporting Requirements and New Information Collection
Document Number: 2017-25735
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-11-28
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation made by the American Pecan Council (Council) to establish reporting requirements under the Federal marketing order for pecans (Order). The Council locally administers the Order and is comprised of growers and handlers of pecans operating within the production area and one public member. This action requires all pecan handlers to submit two forms to the Council: one for inter-handler transfers and another that includes year-end inventory and pecans handled throughout the year. The Council will use this information to facilitate assessment collection and provide valuable reports to the industry, including the annual marketing policy required by the Order.
Oranges, Grapefruit, Tangerines, and Pummelos Grown in Florida and Imported Grapefruit; Change in Size Requirements for Grapefruit
Document Number: 2017-25209
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-11-21
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Citrus Administrative Committee (Committee) to relax the minimum size requirements currently prescribed for grapefruit under the marketing order for oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and pummelos grown in Florida (Order). The Committee locally administers the Order and is comprised of producers and handlers operating within the production area and one public member. This rule relaxes the minimum size requirement for grapefruit from 3\5/16\ inches in diameter to 3 inches in diameter. This rule will maximize shipments by allowing more grapefruit to be shipped to the fresh market and will help reduce the losses sustained by the grapefruit industry during the September 2017 hurricane in Florida. The corresponding change in the grapefruit import regulation is required under section 8e of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937.
Oranges, Grapefruit, Tangerines, and Pummelos Grown in Florida; Change in Size Requirements for Oranges
Document Number: 2017-24701
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-11-16
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Citrus Administrative Committee (Committee) to relax the minimum size requirements currently prescribed under the marketing Order for oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and pummelos grown in Florida (Order). The Committee locally administers the order and is comprised of growers and handlers operating within the production area and one public member. This rule relaxes the minimum size requirements for oranges from 2\8/16\ inches to 2\4/16\ inches in diameter. This rule will maximize shipments by allowing more oranges to be shipped to the fresh market and help reduce the losses sustained by the citrus industry during the September 2017 hurricane in Florida. This rule also contains a formatting change to subpart references to bring the Order language into conformance with Office of Federal Register's guidelines.
National Organic Program (NOP); Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices
Document Number: 2017-24675
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-11-14
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The United States Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is delaying the effective date of the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices final rule published in the Federal Register on January 19, 2017 (OLPP final rule), until May 14, 2018.
Softwood Lumber Research, Promotion, Consumer Education and Industry Information Order; De Minimis Quantity Exemption Threshold
Document Number: 2017-23094
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-10-26
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule establishes a de minimis quantity exemption threshold under the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) regulations regarding a national research and promotion program for softwood lumber. In response to a 2016 federal district court decision, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) conducted a new analysis to determine a reasonable and appropriate de minimis threshold. Based on that analysis, this rule establishes the de minimis quantity threshold at 15 million board feet (mmbf) and entities manufacturing (and domestically shipping) or importing less than 15 mmbf per year will be exempt from paying assessments under the regulations.
National Organic Program: Notice of Interim Instruction, Maintaining the Integrity of Organic Imports
Document Number: 2017-23093
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-10-25
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is announcing the availability of an interim instruction document intended for use by USDA-accredited organic certifying agents (certifiers). The interim instruction is entitled as follows: Maintaining the Integrity of Organic Imports (NOP 4013). This interim instruction explains the USDA organic regulations' current requirements for certifiers engaged in the oversight of organic products imported into the United States. It also recommends best practices that certifiers may use in order to comply with the existing regulations. AMS invites organic handlers, certifying agents, importers, consumers, and other interested parties to submit comments on the interim instruction. Specifically, comments should address the parts of the instruction that recommend best practices that certifiers may use to ensure compliance with the USDA organic regulations. This document is not intended to request comments on the existing USDA organic regulations found at 7 CFR part 205.
Pistachios Grown in California, Arizona, and New Mexico; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-22711
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-10-24
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Administrative Committee for Pistachios (Committee) for a decrease in the assessment rate established for the 2017-18 and subsequent production years from $0.0010 to $0.0001 per pound of assessed weight pistachios handled under the marketing order (order). The Committee locally administers the order and is comprised of producers and handlers of pistachios operating within the area of production, and a public member. Assessments upon pistachio handlers are used by the Committee to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The production year begins September 1 and ends August 31. The assessment rate will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
United States Standards for Grades of Pork Carcasses
Document Number: 2017-22934
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-10-23
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is seeking public comment on revisions to the United States Standards for Grades of Pork Carcasses (pork standards). The last revision to the pork standards occurred in 1985 and the standards no longer accurately reflect value differences in today's pork products. Modern pork production is characterized by products with improved color and higher marbling content, two factors that have been consistently identified by researchers as the main components affecting pork eating quality.
Minimum Quality and Handling Standards for Domestic and Imported Peanuts Marketed in the United States; Change to the Quality and Handling Requirements
Document Number: 2017-22712
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-10-20
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Peanut Standards Board (Board) to revise the minimum quality and handling standards for domestic and imported peanuts marketed in the United States (Standards). The Board advises the Secretary of Agriculture regarding potential changes to the Standards and is comprised of producers and industry representatives. This action relaxes the allowance for damaged kernels in farmers stock peanuts when determining segregation. This change increases the allowance for damaged kernels under Segregation 1 from not more than 2.49 percent to not more than 3.49 percent. The requirements for Segregation 2 are also adjusted to reflect this change. The Board recommended this change to align the incoming standards with recent changes to the outgoing quality standards and to help increase returns to producers.
Request for Extension of and Revision to a Currently Approved Information Collection
Document Number: 2017-22221
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-10-13
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intent to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for an extension of and revision to the currently approved information collection used in support of the Regulations Governing the Inspection of Eggs (as authorized by the Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA)), which is commonly referred to as the Shell Egg Surveillance Program.
Revision of a Currently Approved Collection
Document Number: 2017-22134
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-10-13
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intention to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget, for a revision of a currently approved collection for the Regulations Governing the Inspection and Grading of Manufactured or Processed Dairy ProductsRecordkeeping (Subpart B).
Cranberries Grown in States of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington, and Long Island in the State of New York; Request for Approval of a New Information Collection
Document Number: 2017-21735
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-10-10
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Agency's intent to request emergency approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for a new information collection for cranberry handlers, where applicable, to provide prior affirmative consent authorizing five forms needed to implement and facilitate compliance with a handler withhold volume regulation for the 2017-18 season under the marketing order for cranberries grown in the states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington, and Long Island in the State of New York.
Regulations Issued Under Authority of the Export Apple Act and Export Grapes and Plums; Changes to Export Reporting Requirements; Withdrawal
Document Number: 2017-21183
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-10-05
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This document withdraws a proposed rule to change the reporting of export certificate information under regulations issued pursuant to the Export Apple Act and the Export Grape and Plum Act. After reviewing and considering the comments received, the agency has decided not to proceed with this action.
Notice of Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection for the Dairy Product Mandatory Reporting Program
Document Number: 2017-20870
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-09-29
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intention to request an extension and revision of a currently approved information collection under the Dairy Product Mandatory Reporting Program. The information collected supports the marketing of dairy products and is used to verify compliance with Federal milk marketing regulations.
Raisins Produced From Grapes Grown in California; Secretary's Decision and Referendum Order on Proposed Amendments to Marketing Order No. 989
Document Number: 2017-20347
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-09-29
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This decision proposes amendments to Marketing Order No. 989 (order), which regulates the handling of raisins produced from grapes grown in California and provides producers with the opportunity to vote in a referendum to determine if they favor the changes. Five amendments proposed by the Raisin Administrative Committee (RAC or Committee), the agency responsible for local administration of the order, would: Authorize production research; establish new nomination procedures for independent producer member and alternate member seats; add authority to regulate quality; add authority to establish different regulations for different markets; and add a continuance referenda requirement. In addition, the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) proposed to: Remove order language pertaining to volume regulation and reserve pool authority; establish term limits for Committee members; and, to make any such changes as may be necessary to the order to conform to any amendment that may be adopted, or to correct minor inconsistencies and typographical errors. These proposed amendments would update the order to reflect changes in the industry and potential future changes, and would improve the operation and administration of the order.
Hazelnuts Grown in Oregon and Washington; Secretary's Decision and Referendum Order on Proposed Amendments to Marketing Order No. 982
Document Number: 2017-19920
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-09-28
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This decision proposes amendments to Marketing Order No. 982 (order), which regulates the handling of hazelnuts grown in Oregon and Washington, and provides growers with the opportunity to vote in a referendum to determine if they favor the changes. Two amendments are proposed by the Hazelnut Marketing Board (Board), which is responsible for local administration of the order. The proposed amendments would add both the authority to regulate quality for the purpose of pathogen reduction and the authority to establish different regulations for different markets. In addition, the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) proposed to make any such changes as may be necessary to the order to conform to any amendment that may result from the public hearing. The proposals would aid in pathogen reduction and the industry's ability to meet the needs of different market destinations.
Watermelon Research and Promotion Plan; Redistricting and Importer Representation
Document Number: 2017-20610
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-09-27
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposal invites comments on realigning the production districts under the Watermelon Research and Promotion Plan (Plan) for producer and handler membership on the National Watermelon Promotion Board (Board), and adding four importer seats to the Board. The Board administers the Plan with oversight by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). These changes were recommended by the Board after a review of the production volume in each district as well as assessments paid by importers. This action is necessary to provide for the equitable representation of producers, handlers and importers on the Board. The Plan requires that such a review be conducted every 5 years. This action would increase the number of importer seats from 8 to 12, thereby increasing the number of Board members from 37 to a total of 41: 14 producers, 14 handlers, 12 importers, and one public member.
Request for Approval of a New Information Collection for Beef Producers To Request for State To Retain a Portion of Assessments
Document Number: 2017-20184
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-09-22
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Agency's intent to request emergency approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for a new information collection for beef producers, where applicable, to provide prior affirmative consent authorizing a state Qualified State Beef Council (QSBC) to retain a portion of their assessments collected under the Beef Promotion and Research Act of 1985 (Act).
Onions Grown in South Texas; Increased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-19690
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-09-19
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the South Texas Onion Committee (Committee) to increase the assessment rate established for the 2017-18 and subsequent fiscal periods from $0.05 to $0.065 per 50-pound equivalent of onions handled under the marketing order (order). The Committee locally administers the order and is comprised of producers and handlers of onions operating within the area of production. Assessments upon onion handlers are used by the Committee to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The fiscal period begins August 1 and ends July 31. The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; Establishment of Assessment Rates
Document Number: 2017-19554
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-09-19
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the American Pecan Council (Council) to establish the initial assessment rates for the 2016-17 and subsequent fiscal years at $0.03 per pound for improved varieties, $0.02 per pound for native and seedling varieties, and $0.02 per pound for substandard pecans handled under the pecan marketing order (order). The Council locally administers the order and is comprised of growers and handlers of pecans operating within the production area and a public member. Assessments upon pecan handlers will be used by the Council to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The fiscal year begins October 1 and ends September 30. The assessment rates will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Pears Grown in Oregon and Washington; Increased Assessment Rate for Processed Pears
Document Number: 2017-19615
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-09-18
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the Processed Pear Committee (Committee) to increase the assessment rate established for the 2017-2018 and subsequent fiscal periods from $7.00 to $8.00 per ton of ``summer/fall'' pears for canning. The Committee locally administers the marketing order and is comprised of growers, handlers, and processors of processed pears grown in Oregon and Washington. Assessments upon processed pear handlers are used by the Committee to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the marketing order. The fiscal period begins July 1 and ends June 30. The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended or terminated.
Apricots Grown in Designated Counties in Washington; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-19553
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-09-15
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Washington Apricot Marketing Committee (Committee) for a decrease in the assessment rate established for the 2017-2018 and subsequent fiscal periods from $1.40 to $1.00 per ton of apricots handled. The Committee locally administers the marketing order and is comprised of growers and handlers of apricots operating within the area of production. Assessments upon apricot handlers are used by the Committee to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The fiscal period begins April 1 and ends March 31. The assessment rate will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Cotton Board Rules and Regulations: Adjusting Supplemental Assessment on Imports (2017 Amendments)
Document Number: 2017-18758
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-09-05
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is amending the Cotton Board Rules and Regulations, increasing the value assigned to imported cotton for the purposes of calculating supplemental assessments collected for use by the Cotton Research and Promotion Program. This amendment is required each year to ensure that assessments collected on imported cotton and the cotton content of imported products will be the same as those paid on domestically produced cotton. In addition, AMS is updating the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) statistical reporting numbers that were amended since the last assessment adjustment in 2016.
Tart Cherries Grown in the States of Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin; Modification of Allocation of Assessments
Document Number: 2017-18756
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-09-05
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Tart Cherry Industry Administrative Board (Board) to increase the portion of assessments allocated to research and promotion activities from $0.005 to $0.0065 per pound of tart cherries and decrease the portion allocated to administrative expenses from $0.0025 to $0.001 per pound of tart cherries handled under the marketing order (order). This rule also corrects the allocation numbers from $0.006 per pound for research and promotion activities and $0.0015 per pound for administrative expenses as stated in the proposed rule based on a comment received. The overall assessment rate remains unchanged at $0.0075 per pound of tart cherries. The Board locally administers the order and is comprised of producers and handlers of tart cherries operating within the area of production, and one public member. Assessments upon tart cherry handlers are used by the Board to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The fiscal period begins October 1 and ends September 30. The assessment rate will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
United States Standards for Grades of Frozen Onions
Document Number: 2017-17642
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-08-22
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) of the Department of Agriculture (USDA) is establishing voluntary United States Standards for Grades of Frozen Onions. The grade standards provide a common language for trade, a means of measuring value in the marketing of frozen onions, and guidance on the effective use of frozen onions.
U.S. Standards for Grades of Shelled Walnuts and Walnuts in the Shell
Document Number: 2017-17641
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-08-22
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule revises the U.S. Standards for Grades of Shelled Walnuts and the U.S. Standards for Grades of Walnuts in the Shell issued under the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1946. The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) of the Department of Agriculture (USDA) is amending the color requirements to include red-colored walnuts. In addition, AMS is removing the ``Unclassified'' section. These revisions will modernize the standards to more accurately represent today's marketing practices and to meet growing consumer demand by providing greater marketing flexibility.
Hazelnuts Grown in Oregon and Washington; Increased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-17488
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-08-18
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the
Cotton Research and Promotion Program: Procedures for Conduct of Sign-Up Period
Document Number: 2017-17143
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-08-15
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is making corrections to the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) by revising the authority citation for its regulation, Cotton Research and Promotion. In a final rule published in the Federal Register on June 24, 2015, changes were inadvertently made to remove a legal citation from the authority citation and to erroneously include an unnecessary authority citation after a section in AMS regulations. This document corrects those errors.
Proposed California Federal Milk Marketing Order; Documents for Official Notice
Document Number: 2017-17100
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-08-14
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This document announces the intention of the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) to take Official Notice of documents related to the California Federal Milk Marketing Order (FMMO) rulemaking proceeding. This document invites interested parties to submit comments on whether the documents are relevant to the material issues of the proceeding.
Cranberries Grown in the States of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington, and Long Island in the State of New York; Order Amending Marketing Order 929
Document Number: 2017-16656
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-08-08
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
Notice is hereby given that a referendum to amend Marketing Order and Agreement No. 929 (order), which regulates the handling of cranberries grown in the states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington, and Long Island in the State of New York, did not meet the minimum voting requirements for approval. The Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, as amended, hereinafter referred to as the ``Act'' requires, in part, that a proposed amendment to the cranberries order must be approved by two-thirds of producers voting, or by those voting in the referendum representing at least two-thirds of the volume of cranberries, as well as by processors who have frozen or canned more than 50 percent of the volume of cranberries within the production area. Processors representing only 18 percent of the volume of cranberries within the production area voted in the referendum. Because a minimum of 50 percent of the volume of cranberries processed within the production area is required in order to pass, the referendum did not pass and the proposed amendment will not be implemented. The amendment, which was proposed by the Cranberry Marketing Committee (Committee), would have authorized the Committee to receive and expend voluntary contributions from domestic sources.
Fruit and Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee (FVIAC): Notice of Intent To Renew Charter and Call for Nominations
Document Number: 2017-16202
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-08-02
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Fruit and Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee (FVIAC) was established to examine the full spectrum of fruit and vegetable issues and provide recommendations and ideas to the Secretary of Agriculture on how the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) can tailor programs to better meet the needs of the fruit and vegetable industry. Through this Notice, USDA is announcing the following: Its intent to renew the Charter of the FVIAC, which expires on July 28, 2017; its call for nominations to fill ten (10) upcoming vacancies for appointments in 2017, and its call for nominations for a pool of candidates to fill future unexpected vacancies in any of the position categories should that occur.
Notice of Meeting of the National Organic Standards Board
Document Number: 2017-15308
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-07-21
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended, the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is announcing a meeting of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) to discuss the development of a proposal on aeroponics/bioponics/hydroponics.
Pecans Grown in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas; Establishment of Reporting Requirements and New Information Collection
Document Number: 2017-15305
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-07-21
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule invites comments on the establishment of reporting requirements under the Federal marketing order for pecans (order). The American Pecan Council (Council) locally administers the order and is comprised of growers and handlers of pecans operating within the production area and a public member. This action would require all pecan handlers to submit two forms to the Council: One for inter-handler transfers and another that includes year-end inventory and pecans handled throughout the year. The Council would use this information to facilitate assessment collection and provide valuable reports to the industry, including the annual marketing policy required by the order. This proposal also announces the Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intention to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) of a new information collection.
Walnuts Grown in California; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-15304
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-07-21
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the California Walnut Board (Board) to decrease the assessment rate established for the 2017-18 and subsequent marketing years from $0.0465 to $0.0400 per kernelweight pound of assessable walnuts. The Board is comprised of growers and handlers of walnuts and locally administers the marketing order that regulates the handling of walnuts grown in California. The Board also has a public member who has no financial interest in walnut production or handling. Assessments upon walnut handlers are used by the Board to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The marketing year begins September 1 and ends August 31. The assessment rate will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Request for Extension of a Currently Approved Information Collection
Document Number: 2017-15129
Type: Notice
Date: 2017-07-19
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intent to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for an extension of the currently approved information collection used to compile and generate the Federally Inspected Estimated Daily Slaughter Report (OMB 0581- 0050).
Sweet Onions Grown in the Walla Walla Valley of Southeast Washington and Northeast Oregon; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-14177
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-07-06
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Department of Agriculture is adopting, as a final rule, without change, an interim rule that implemented a recommendation from the Walla Walla Sweet Onion Marketing Committee (Committee) to decrease the assessment rate established for the 2017 and subsequent fiscal periods from $0.22 to $0.10 per 50-pound bag or equivalent of sweet onions handled. The Committee locally administers the marketing order and is comprised of producers and handlers of sweet onions operating within the area of production along with one public member. The interim rule was necessary to allow the Committee to reduce its financial reserve while still providing adequate funding to meet program expenses.
National Organic Program (NOP); Sunset 2017 Amendments to the National List
Document Number: 2017-14006
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-07-06
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This final rule amends the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (National List) within the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) organic regulations, to prohibit the use of 8 substances in organic production and handling after June 27, 2017: Lignin sulfonate (for use as a floating agent); furosemide; magnesium carbonate; and the nonorganic forms of chia, dillweed oil, frozen galangal, frozen lemongrass, and chipotle chile peppers. This action also renews 3 substances on the National List to continue to allow nonorganic forms of inulin-oligofructose enriched, Turkish bay leaves, and whey protein concentrate in organic products. This action addresses eleven recommendations submitted to the Secretary of Agriculture (Secretary) by the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) following its October 2015 meeting. These recommendations pertain to the NOSB's 2017 sunset review of a portion of the substances on the National List.
Tart Cherries Grown in the States of Michigan, et al.; Free and Restricted Percentages for the 2016-17 Crop Year for Tart Cherries
Document Number: 2017-13241
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-06-26
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Cherry Industry Administrative Board (Board) to establish free and restricted percentages for the 2016-17 crop year under the marketing order for tart cherries grown in the states of Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin (order). The Board locally administers the marketing order and is comprised of producers and handlers of tart cherries operating within the production area, and a public member. This action establishes the proportion of tart cherries from the 2016 crop which may be handled in commercial outlets at 71 percent free and 29 percent restricted. These percentages should stabilize marketing conditions by adjusting supply to meet market demand and help improve grower returns.
Irish Potatoes Grown in Certain Designated Counties in Idaho, and Malheur County, Oregon; Decreased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2017-13174
Type: Rule
Date: 2017-06-23
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule implements a recommendation from the Idaho-Eastern Oregon Potato Committee (Committee) to decrease the assessment rate established for the 2017-2018 and subsequent fiscal periods from $0.0025 to $0.002 per hundredweight of potatoes handled. The Committee locally administers the marketing order which regulates the handling of potatoes grown in certain designated counties in Idaho, and Malheur County, Oregon. Assessments upon potato handlers are used by the Committee to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The fiscal period begins August 1 and ends July 31. The assessment rate will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Grapes Grown in a Designated Area of Southeastern California and Imported Table Grapes; Removing Varietal Exemptions
Document Number: 2017-13173
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2017-06-23
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the California Desert Grape Administrative Committee (Committee) to remove varietal exemptions from the regulations established under the California table grape marketing order (order) and the table grape import regulation (import regulation). The order regulates the handling of table grapes grown in a designated area of southeastern California and is administered locally by the Committee. The import regulation is authorized under section 8e of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, as amended, and regulates the importation of table grapes into the United States. In conjunction with this proposed rule, administrative exemptions that were previously granted for other varieties of imported grapes, including those that are genetically related to the four varieties exempted under the order's regulations and import regulation, would be removed.