Agricultural Marketing Service March 2015 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Grapes Grown in a Designated Area of Southeastern California; Increased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2015-07370
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2015-03-31
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the California Desert Grape Administrative Committee (Committee) to increase the assessment rate for the 2015 and subsequent fiscal periods from $0.0200 to $0.0250 per 18-pound lug of grapes handled. The Committee locally administers the marketing order and is comprised of producers and handlers of grapes grown and handled in a designated area of southeastern California. Assessments upon grape handlers are used by the Committee to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The fiscal period began on January 1 and ends December 31. The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Olives Grown in California; Increased Assessment Rate
Document Number: 2015-07116
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2015-03-30
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the California Olive Committee (committee) to increase the assessment rate established for the 2015 and subsequent fiscal years from $15.21 to $26.00 per assessable ton of olives handled. The committee locally administers the marketing order and is comprised of producers and handlers of olives grown in California. Assessments upon olive handlers are used by the committee to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The fiscal year begins January 1 and ends December 31. The assessment rate would remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
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 2014-2015 Marketing Year
Document Number: 2015-07114
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-03-30
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This interim rule implements a recommendation from the Spearmint Oil Administrative Committee (Committee) to further revise the quantity of Class 3 (Native) spearmint oil that handlers may purchase from, or handle on behalf of, producers during the 2014-2015 marketing year under the Far West spearmint oil marketing order (order). The salable quantity and allotment percentage for Native spearmint oil was initially established at 1,090,821 pounds and 46 percent, respectively, and was subsequently increased to 1,280,561 pounds and 54 percent in a separate rulemaking action. This rule further increases the Native spearmint oil salable quantity to 1,351,704 pounds and the allotment percentage to 57 percent for the 2014-2015 marketing year. The order regulates the handling of spearmint oil produced in the Far West and is locally administered by the Committee, which is comprised of spearmint oil producers operating within the order's area of production. The Committee recommended this rule for the purpose of maintaining orderly marketing conditions in the Far West spearmint oil market.
Marketing Order Regulating the Handling of Spearmint Oil Produced in the Far West; Revision of the Salable Quantity and Allotment Percentage for Class 1 (Scotch) Spearmint Oil for the 2014-2015 Marketing Year
Document Number: 2015-07110
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-03-30
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Department of Agriculture (USDA) is adopting as a final rule, without change, an interim rule recommended by the Spearmint Oil Administrative Committee (Committee) that revised the quantity of Class 1 (Scotch) spearmint oil that handlers may purchase from or handle on behalf of, producers during the 2014-2015 marketing year under the Far West spearmint oil marketing order. The Committee locally administers the order and is comprised of producers and handlers of spearmint oil. The interim rule increased the Scotch spearmint oil salable quantity from 1,149,030 pounds to 1,984,423 pounds and the allotment percentage from 55 percent to 95 percent. This change is expected to help maintain orderly marketing conditions in the Far West spearmint oil market.
Fruit, Vegetable, and Specialty Crops-Import Regulations; Changes to Reporting Requirements To Add Electronic Form Filing Option
Document Number: 2015-06490
Type: Rule
Date: 2015-03-25
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This rule changes the reporting requirements for commodities exempt from import regulations under section 608(e) (hereinafter referred to as ``8e'') of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937 by adding an option to electronically file an ``Importer's Exempt Commodity Form'' (FV-6 form). These changes are needed to bring the import regulations into conformance with the current practice of filing FV-6 forms electronically using the Marketing Order Online System (MOLS), an internet-based application that was implemented in 2008. This rule also changes the import regulations for dates and raisins by moving the FV-6 form-filing procedures for these two commodities to the safeguard procedure regulations for specialty crops and by making other administrative updates. These changes to the import regulations are also required to support the International Trade Data System (ITDS), a key White House economic initiative that will automate the filing of import and export information by the trade. All government agencies that are participating in the ITDS initiative, including AMS, are required by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (hereinafter referred to as ``CBP'') to make updates to import and export regulations to provide for the electronic entry of shipment data.
Marketing Order Regulating the Handling of Spearmint Oil Produced in the Far West; Salable Quantities and Allotment Percentages for the 2015-2016 Marketing Year
Document Number: 2015-05681
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2015-03-16
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule would implement a recommendation from the Spearmint Oil Administrative Committee (Committee) to establish the quantity of spearmint oil produced in the Far West, by class, that handlers may purchase from, or handle on behalf of, producers during the 2015-2016 marketing year, which begins on June 1, 2015. The Far West includes the states of Washington, Idaho, and Oregon, and designated parts of Nevada and Utah. This rule invites comments on the establishment of salable quantities and allotment percentages for Class 1 (Scotch) spearmint oil of 1,265,853 pounds and 60 percent, respectively, and for Class 3 (Native) spearmint oil of 1,341,269 pounds and 56 percent, respectively. The Committee locally administers the marketing order for spearmint oil produced in the Far West and recommended these quantities to help maintain stability in the spearmint oil market.
Notice of Meeting of the National Organic Standards Board
Document Number: 2015-05664
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-03-12
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended, (5 U.S.C. App.), the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is announcing an upcoming meeting of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB). Written public comments are invited in advance of the meeting, and the meeting will include scheduled time for oral comments from the public.
National Organic Program; Nominations for Task Force Members
Document Number: 2015-05403
Type: Notice
Date: 2015-03-09
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is soliciting nominees to participate in a task force to examine hydroponic and aquaponic practices and their alignment with the USDA organic regulations and the Organic Foods Production Act (OFPA). The USDA organic regulations do not include specific provisions for organic hydroponic or aquaponic production. However, these production systems have obtained certification under the USDA organic regulations by complying with the existing requirements for organic crop production. The task force will inform the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) of their findings and advise on what practices should be allowed or restricted in organic hydroponic and aquaponic production.
Grapes Grown in a Designated Area of Southeastern California and Imported Table Grapes; Relaxation of Handling Requirements
Document Number: 2015-04087
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2015-03-03
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This proposed rule invites comments on partially relaxing the handling requirements currently prescribed under the California table grape marketing order (order) and the table grape import regulation. The order regulates the handling of table grapes grown in a designated area of southeastern California and is administered locally by the California Desert Grape Administrative Committee (committee). The import regulation is authorized under section 8e of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937 and regulates the importation of table grapes into the United States. This action would partially relax the one-quarter pound minimum bunch size requirement in the order's regulations and the import regulation for U.S. No. 1 Table grade grapes packed in consumer packages known as clamshells weighing 5 pounds or less. Under the proposal, up to 20 percent of the weight of such containers may consist of single grape clusters weighing less than one- quarter pound, but consisting of at least five berries each. This rule would provide California desert grape handlers and importers with the flexibility to respond to an ongoing marketing opportunity to meet consumer needs.
Oranges, Grapefruit, Tangerines, and Tangelos Grown in Florida; Recommended Decision and Opportunity To File Written Exceptions to Proposed Amendments to Marketing Order No. 905
Document Number: 2015-04085
Type: Proposed Rule
Date: 2015-03-03
Agency: Agricultural Marketing Service, Department of Agriculture
This recommended decision proposes amendments to Marketing Order No. 905 (order), which regulates the handling of oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, and tangelos (citrus) grown in Florida. Nine amendments are proposed by the Citrus Administrative Committee (Committee), which is responsible for local administration of the order. These proposed amendments would: Authorize regulation of new varieties and hybrids of citrus fruit, authorize the regulation of intrastate shipments of fruit, revise the process for redistricting the production area, change the term of office and tenure requirements for Committee members, authorize mail balloting procedures for Committee membership nominations, increase the capacity of financial reserve funds, authorize pack and container requirements for domestic shipments and authorize different regulations for different markets, eliminate the use of separate acceptance statements in the nomination process, and require handlers to register with the Committee. These proposed amendments are intended to improve the operation and administration of the order.