Specialty Crops Program

The AMS Specialty Crops Program helps buyers and sellers of all sizes in the U.S. produce industry to market their perishable products in the most efficient manner. We partner with State agencies and other industry organizations for the benefit of nationwide growers, shippers, brokers, receivers, processors, retailers and restaurants, direct to consumer sales, and the foodservice industry.

The program offers a wide array of services that span from helping market the quality of products to ensuring that there is fair trade in the produce industry. The program also helps specialty crops  growers and handlers to combine their resources to help their respective industries overcome marketing barriers.

Specialty Crops Program Newsletter

Contact Information

Specialty Crops Program
USDA, Agricultural Marketing Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Room 1575-South, Stop 0235
Washington, D.C. 20250-0235

Office of the Deputy Administrator
Heather M. Pichelman, Associate Deputy Administrator
Email: heather.pichelman@usda.gov
(202) 699-1123

Ken Petersen, Associate Deputy Administrator
E-mail:  ken.petersen@usda.gov
Phone: (202) 720-9897

Darrell Hughes, Chief of Staff
Email: Darrell.A.Hughes@usda.gov
Phone: (202) 378-2576

Specialty Crops Inspection Division (Full Contact List)

Nathaniel (Chip) Taylor, Director
nathaniel.taylor@usda.gov
Phone: (202) 720-5870

Market News Division (Full Contact List)
John Okoniewski, Director
E-mail: john.okoniewski@usda.gov
Phone: (202) 720-9932
Webpage: Specialty Crops Market News Reports

Marketing Development Division
Michelle Sharrow, Director
E-mail:  michelle.sharrow@usda.gov
Phone: (202) 690-1172
Marketing Orders Webpage: Specialty Crops Marketing Orders & Agreements
Marketing Programs Webpage: Research and Promotion Programs