Bovine Tuberculosis Status of Michigan; Advance Counties From Modified Accredited Advanced to Accredited-Free
We are amending the bovine tuberculosis regulations to advance the status of Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Crawford, Emmet, Otsego, and Presque Isle Counties in Michigan from modified accredited advanced to accredited-free. We have determined that these counties meet the criteria for accredited-free status. This action relieves certain restrictions on the interstate movement of cattle and bison from these areas of Michigan.
Discontinuing Export Certificates for Food Products That Contain Egg Products as an Ingredient
The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing that it will no longer issue export certificates for Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-regulated prepared or manufactured food products that contain egg products as an ingredient because the Agricultural Marketing Service has instituted a program to provide this service. FSIS will discontinue issuing certificates on November 10, 2014.
Codex Alimentarius Commission: Meeting of the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses
The Office of the Under Secretary for Food Safety, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Office of Nutrition, Labeling, and Dietary Supplements are sponsoring a public meeting on October 28, 2014. The objective of the public meeting is to provide information and receive public comments on agenda items and draft United States (U.S.) positions to be discussed at the 36th Session of the Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU) of the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CODEX), taking place in Bali, Indonesia November 24-28, 2014. The Under Secretary for Food Safety and the FDA recognize the importance of providing interested parties the opportunity to obtain background information on the 36th Session of the CCNFSDU and to address items on the agenda.
White Pine-Nye Resource Advisory Committee
The White Pine-Nye Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Round Mountain, Nevada. The RAC is authorized under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (the Act) (Pub. L. 110- 343) and operates in compliance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act of 1972 (5 U.S.C. App. 2). The purpose of the RAC is to improve collaborative relationships and to provide advice and recommendations to the Forest Service concerning projects and funding consistent with the Title II of the Act. The meetings are open to the public. Additional information concerning the RAC, including the agenda, can be found by visiting the RAC's Web site at: https://fsplaces.fs.fed.us/ fsfiles/unit/wo/secureruralschools.ns.
Soybean Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Program: Amendment of Procedures and Notification of Request for Referendum
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is affirming without changes its interim rule (79 FR 12037) to amend the procedures to Request a Referendum at 7 CFR Part 1220 by removing the specific number of soybean producers eligible to request a referendum under the Soybean Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information program, commonly known as the Soybean Checkoff Program. The number of soybean producers will be replaced with language that allows the Secretary of Agriculture (Secretary) to update this number based on information provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Additionally, this rule removes specific USDA and Farm Service Agency (FSA) Web site and office addresses and replaces them with more flexible language. These changes will enable AMS to announce future Requests for Referendum without engaging in additional informal rulemaking.
Results of Soybean Request for Referendum
The results of the Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) Request for Referendum indicate that too few soybean producers wanted a referendum on the Soybean Promotion and Research Order (Order) for one to be conducted. The Request for Referendum was conducted from May 5, 2014, through May 30, 2014, at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Farm Service Agency county offices. To trigger a referendum, 56,999 soybean producers needed to complete a valid Request for Referendum. The total number of soybean producers participating in the referendum was 355. The number of valid petitions received was 324.
Process for Establishing Rates Charged for AMS Services
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is proposing to amend its regulations to provide for a set of standardized formulas by which fees are calculated. The methodology used to calculate and implement the fees charged by AMS user-funded programs would be specified in the regulations. Currently, AMS publishes separate rules for each of the service fees it collects. The fees are calculated using formulas to account for all costs incurred by AMS in providing these services. Each year, fees would be announced in a notice in the Federal Register by June 1 and take effect at the start of the fiscal year, crop year, or as required by specific laws. This would provide greater transparency to the customers we serve as to how the fees are derived. The standardized formulas would be used to calculate fees that AMS charges for providing voluntary grading, inspection, certification, auditing and laboratory services for a variety of agricultural commodities including meat and poultry, fruits and vegetables, eggs, dairy products, and cotton and tobacco. The fees would also apply to those persons requesting such services including producers, handlers, processors, importers and exporters. Fees charged for inspection of fruits, vegetables, and specialty crops subject to the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937 also would be affected by this rule. Provisions of this proposed rule would not supersede rates established by Memorandum of Understanding, Marketing Orders, or by cooperative agreements already in place. Furthermore, the cotton program would continue to consult with its industry before rates are established.