USDA Proposes Changes in Grade and Size Requirements for Florida Citrus

October 18, 2018

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is proposing changes to the grade and size requirements under the federal marketing order for oranges, grapefruit, tangerines and pummelos grown in Florida. The Citrus Administrative Committee recommended the changes to allow growers and handlers to use more of the crop to meet market demand.

The proposed changes would:

  • revise the minimum grade requirements for oranges and tangerines from a U.S. No.1 to a US. No. 2;
  • remove the grade and size requirements for Ambersweet and Temple oranges;
  • consolidate the varieties for oranges and grapefruit into one classification category for each; and
  • make a similar consolidation of classifications for grapefruit imported into the United States but make no change to the grade and size requirements.

Details on the changes under consideration may be found in the proposed rule for this action, published in the Federal Register October 18, 2018.  Written comments must be received by November 18, 2018.

Post comments concerning the proposed change at www.regulations.gov. You may also mail them to Docket Clerk, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops Program, Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, STOP 0237, Washington, DC 20250-0237; or fax them to (202) 720-8938.

All comments to this proposed rule submitted by the deadline will be made available for public review and considered before any reporting requirements or information collection are finalized.

Information about the marketing order is available on the 905 Florida Citrus page of the AMS website.

Authorized by the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, marketing orders are industry-driven programs that help producers and handlers achieve marketing success by leveraging their own funds to design and execute programs that they would not be able to do individually. AMS provides oversight to 29 fruit, vegetable, and specialty crop marketing orders and agreements, which helps ensure fiscal accountability and program integrity.

More information about federal marketing orders is available on the Marketing Orders and Agreements page of the AMS website or by contacting the Marketing Order and Agreement Division at (202) 720-2491.

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