USDA Hearing on the Leafy Green Marketing Agreement

As food safety concerns continue to be topics of discussion among growers and policy makers, I thought I would pass along this following information.  There will be a hearing in Columbus on Oct. 6, 2009.  Details are below.

USDA Sets Hearing for Proposed National Marketing Agreement for Leafy Green Vegetables
AMS No. 161-09

Jimmie Turner (202) 720-8998
Billy Cox (202) 720-8998

WASHINGTON, Sept. 2, 2009 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture today announced the dates and locations of seven hearings related to a proposed national marketing agreement for leafy green vegetables. The hearings will be held September and October 2009.

A cross-section of producers and handlers from the fresh-produce industry proposed the establishment of a marketing agreement to facilitate the practical application of Good Agricultural Practices, Good Handling Practices, and Good Manufacturing Practices guidelines published by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

If established, only handlers who sign on to the marketing agreement would be subject to the requirements of the accord. Signatory handlers could only handle leafy green vegetables (domestic or imported) that meet the requirements of the program.

The hearings provide the public an opportunity to learn more about the proposed agreement and to offer comments in support of or opposition to the agreement. The hearings will be held at the following locations from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (local time) or as determined by the presiding administrative law judge:

Sept. 22-24, at the Hyatt Regency Monterey, 1 Old Golf Course Road, Monterey, Calif.

Sept. 30 to Oct. 1, at the Wyndham Jacksonville Riverwalk, 1515 Prudential Drive, Jacksonville, Fla.

Oct. 6, at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, Room D130, 400 North High Street, Columbus, Ohio.

Oct. 8, at the Denver Airport Marriott at Gateway Park, 16455 East 40th Circle, Aurora, Colo.

Oct. 14-15, at the Yuma Civic Center, Yuma Room, 1440 Desert Hills Drive, Yuma, Ariz.

Oct. 20, at the Renaissance Syracuse Hotel, 701 East Genesee Street, Syracuse, N.Y.

Oct. 22, at the Charlotte Marriot Executive Park, 5700 Westpark Drive, Charlotte, N.C.

The proposal and the hearing notice will be published in the Sept. 3, 2009, Federal Register. A copy of the proposal is also available on the home page of the Agricultural Marketing Service’s Web site.

Copies may be obtained from Antoinette Carter, Marketing Order Administration Branch, Fruit and Vegetable Programs, AMS, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Stop 0237, Washington, DC 20250-0237, phone: (202)720-2491, or fax: (202)720-8938; or Melissa Schmaedick, Marketing Order Administration Branch, Fruit and Vegetable Programs, Northwest Marketing Field Office, AMS, USDA, 1220 SW Third Avenue, Room 385, Portland, OR 97204; phone: (503)326-2724, or fax: (503)326-7440.

An electronic version of this news release can be obtained via the Internet at

Posted by:
Christie Welch, Farmers' Market Specialist
The Business Development Network
at The OSU South Centers
1864 Shyville Rd.
Piketon, OH 45661
740-289-3727 Ext. 234
800-860-7232 (Ohio only) Ext. 234
740-289-4591 (Fax)