National Research, Promotion, and Consumer Information Programs; Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection and To Merge the Collections of Softwood Lumber and National Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Programs
In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), this document announces the Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intention to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), for an extension of and revision to the currently approved information collection of the National Research, Promotion, and Consumer Information Programs; and request approval to merge two previously approved information collection packages, Softwood Lumber Research, Promotion, Consumer Education and Industry Information Order (Order) and National Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Program into the National Research, Promotion, and Consumer Information Programs to form a single information collection. This Notice announces AMS' intention to merge the following collections: 0581-0264 ``Softwood Lumber Research, Promotion, Consumer Education and Industry Information Order'' and 0581-0258 ``National Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Program'' into 0581-0093 ``National Research, Promotion, and Consumer Information Program.'' This action will keep all research and promotion collections under one generic collection since similar forms are used to collect information and to prevent duplication of burden.
Tomatoes Grown in Florida; Increased Assessment Rate
This proposed rule would increase the assessment rate established for the Florida Tomato Committee (Committee) for the 2013- 14 and subsequent fiscal periods from $0.024 to $0.0375 per 25-pound carton of tomatoes handled. The Committee locally administers the Federal marketing order, which regulates the handling of tomatoes grown in Florida. Assessments upon Florida tomato 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.
Peanut Promotion, Research, and Information Order; Amendment to Primary Peanut-Producing States and Adjustment of Membership
This proposal invites comments on adding the State of Arkansas as a primary peanut-producing State under the Peanut Promotion, Research, and Information Order (Order). The Order is administered by the National Peanut Board (Board) with oversight by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Under the Order, primary peanut-producing States must maintain a 3-year average production of at least 10,000 tons of peanuts. Arkansas's peanut production meets this requirement. Primary peanut-producing States also have a seat on the Board, and this proposal would also add a seat on the Board for the State of Arkansas. The Board recommended this action to ensure that the Board's representation reflects changes in the geographical distribution of the production of peanuts.
Walnuts Grown in California; Increased Assessment Rate
This rule increases the assessment rate established for the California Walnut Board (Board) for the 2013-14 and subsequent marketing years from $0.0175 to $0.0189 per kernelweight pound of merchantable walnuts. The Board locally administers the marketing order, which regulates the handling of walnuts grown in California. Assessments upon walnut handlers are used by the Board to fund reasonable and necessary expenses of the program. The marketing year begins on September 1 and ends on August 31. The assessment rate will remain in effect indefinitely unless modified, suspended, or terminated.
Softwood Lumber Research, Promotion, Consumer Education and Industry Information Order; Changes to the Membership of the Softwood Lumber Board
This rule changes the membership of the Softwood Lumber Board (Board) established under the Softwood Lumber Research, Promotion, Consumer Education and Industry Information Order (Order). The Board administers the Order with oversight by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Under the Order, assessments are collected from U.S. manufacturers (domestic) and importers and used for projects to promote softwood lumber within the United States. This rule revises the Board's membership to reflect the diversity of the industry in terms of size of operation; allows companies that operate in multiple geographic regions to seek representation in any region in which they operate (U.S. or import); adds flexibility for the Board to nominate eligible persons to fill vacancies that occur during a term; and re-designates the States of Virginia and West Virginia to the U.S. South Region. These changes will help facilitate program operations.
Almonds Grown in California; Continuance Referendum
This document directs that a referendum be conducted among eligible growers of almonds in California to determine whether they favor continuance of the marketing order that regulates the handling of almonds grown in California.
Sweet Cherries Grown in Designated Counties in Washington; Decreased Assessment Rate
The Department of Agriculture is adopting, as a final rule, without change, an interim rule that decreased the assessment rate established for the Washington Cherry Marketing Committee (Committee) for the 2013-2014 and subsequent fiscal periods from $0.18 to $0.15 per ton of sweet cherries handled. The Committee locally administers the marketing order for sweet cherries grown in designated counties in Washington. The Committee's fiscal period begins on April 1, and ends March 31. The interim rule was necessary to allow the Committee to reduce its monetary reserve while still providing adequate funding to meet program expenses.
National Marketing Agreement Regulating Leafy Green Vegetables; Termination of Proceeding on Proposed Marketing Agreement
This action terminates a rulemaking proceeding that proposed to establish a marketing agreement (agreement) under the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937 (Act) to regulate the handling of fresh leafy green vegetables in the United States. The agreement that was proposed by members of the produce industry would have authorized the development and implementation of handling regulations (audit metrics) to reflect the United States Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), Good Handling Practices (GHPs), and Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs).