Release No.: 120-16
WASHINGTON, Aug.1, 2016 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) announced today a new Federal Marketing Order and Agreement regulating the handling for pecans grown in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas. A final rule implementing the program will be published in the Aug. 4, 2016, Federal Register.
The order authorizes the pecan industry, subject to AMS oversight, to collect industry data, conduct research and promotion activities, recommend grade, quality and size regulation, as well as pack and container regulation. The program will be financed by assessments on handlers of pecans grown in the production area. A Council of nine growers, six shellers, one accumulator, and one public member, as well as alternate members for each will administer the program.
USDA is conducting extensive outreach to the pecan industry on the procedures to nominate the first Council. The Secretary of Agriculture will make final selection and appointment of Council members.
The majority of eligible pecan growers (77 percent by vote and 88 percent by volume) voted to establish a pecan marketing order in a referendum held in March 2016. The majority of eligible pecan handlers (85 percent by volume) indicated their support during the June 2016 handler marketing agreement sign-up period.
Marketing orders are industry-driven programs that help fruit, vegetable, dairy and specialty crop producers and handlers establish and maintain orderly marketing conditions.
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