USDA Announces Results of Hazelnut Marketing Order Referendum

December 15, 2017

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced that hazelnut growers in Oregon and Washington have voted to amend their federal marketing order to authorize the regulation of quality for the purpose of pathogen reduction and the establishment of regulations for different markets.

In a referendum conducted from Oct. 16 through Nov. 3, 2017, the amendment adding authority to regulate quality was favored by 69 percent of the growers voting in the referendum, representing 71 percent of the total volume of hazelnuts produced by those voting.  The amendment adding authority to establish regulations for different markets was favored by 68 percent of the growers voting in the referendum, representing 69 percent of the total volume of hazelnuts produced by those voting.

For the amendments to pass, they must have been favored either by at least two-thirds of the growers voting in the referendum or at least two-thirds of the volume represented in the referendum. Both criteria were met for each amendment.

To be eligible to vote, a grower must have produced hazelnuts in the designated area between July 1, 2016, and June 30, 2016.

The Federal Register published a notice of the referendum Sep. 28, 2017. USDA also announced the referendum in a notice to trade Oct. 10, 2017. A final rule implementing the amendment will be published in a future edition of the Federal Register.

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