The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Federal Grain Inspection Service today (June 29) published separate notices seeking comments on the current U.S. grain standards for corn, soybeans and canola.
The U.S. grain standards for various commodities customarily are reviewed every five years, but the NGFA and North American Export Grain Association, among others, encouraged FGIS to expedite a review of the U.S. grain standards for soybeans to determine if changes are warranted – in particular because of potential differences in the methods used to determine foreign material in soybeans by major U.S. foreign competitors, such as Brazil, that may disadvantage U.S. soybean exports. The current U.S. grain standards for soybeans calculate foreign material based upon “all matter that passes through an 8/64th round-hole sieve and all matter other than soybeans remaining in the sieved sample.” Meanwhile, Brazil defines “foreign material and impurities” as all material passing through a 3-millimeter sieve (7.5/64 inches). All material other than soybeans remaining on top of the sieve, including all seed coats that have separated from the bean, also are considered foreign material and impurities.
Comments or notices of intent to submit comments are due by Aug. 28, and are to be submitted to: Kendra Kline, Agricultural Marketing Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Room 2043-South Bldg., Washington, D.C. 20250-3614, or through the federal government’s internet portal at www.regulations.gov. FGIS now is housed within the Agricultural Marketing Service following Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue’s reorganization of USDA to improve customer service.
NGFA’s Grain Grades and Weights Committee, under the chairmanship of Nick Friant, food safety, quality and regulatory leader for grain at Cargill Agricultural Supply Chain North America, Minneapolis, Minn., will be developing the NGFA’s comments on each of the standards. Input from NGFA members should be directed to NGFA Vice President for Safety and Regulatory Affairs Jess McCluer at email@example.com.