USDA Sets Referendum Dates for a Proposed Amendment to the Cranberry Marketing Order

September 27, 2018

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will conduct a referendum Oct. 29 through Nov. 19, 2018, on a proposed amendment to authorize the Cranberry Marketing Committee to accept financial contributions from domestic sources to help fund research and development activities allowed under the marketing order for cranberries grown in the states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington and Long Island in the State of New York.

To pass, the proposed amendment must be approved by either two-thirds of the producers voting in the referendum or be approved by producers representing at least two-thirds of the volume of cranberries voted in the referendum. The proposed amendment must also be approved by processors who have frozen or canned more than 50 percent of the volume of cranberries within the production area.

The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will mail ballots and voting instructions to all producers and processors of record covered under the marketing order. To be eligible to vote, producers and processors must have handled cranberries grown in the regulated area between Sept. 1, 2016 and Aug. 31, 2017.

Eligible producers and processors who have not received a ballot by Oct. 29, 2018, may request one by calling (863) 324–3375, faxing (863) 291–8614 or mailing the request to Southeast Florida Marketing Field Office, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA, 1124 1st St. South, Winter Haven, Florida, 33880.

Notice of the referendum was published in the Federal Register Sept. 14, 2018.

Information about the marketing order is available on the AMS website at 929 Cranberries.

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. The Agricultural Marketing Service provides oversight to 29 fruit, vegetable and specialty crops marketing orders and agreements, which helps ensure fiscal accountability and program integrity.

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

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