USDA AMS Updates Penalties for Violations of the Federal Seed Act

December 02, 2021

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) announced today that a three-year phased increase of civil monetary penalties to the maximum amounts provided for by a rule on Civil Monetary Penalty Inflation Adjustments will begin Jan. 1, 2022.

A final rule published in the Federal Register on May 10, 2021, authorizes a maximum penalty of $2,020 per violation of the Federal Seed Act. The current maximum penalty is $650. The maximum penalty during the first year of the phased increase will be $1,100.  Similar and proportional increases will take place the following two years.  Beyond the initial three years, the maximum penalty amounts for violations of the Federal Seed Act will remain consistent with future releases of the USDA Civil Monetary Penalty Adjustment.

AMS is dedicated to promoting the U.S. seed industry while maintaining an effective regulatory presence to ensure a fair and competitive market.  The penalty increase, and the phased approach used to implement it, will minimize impact on the seed industry while ensuring that AMS maintains an effective deterrent.

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