The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will begin issuing inspection certificates and audit reports in several formats as the agency deploys the Specialty Crops Integrated Operating Network (SCION), a new web-based platform that will modernize USDA specialty crops inspection and audit services.
Over the next year, AMS will develop and implement SCION in three releases, each of which will support an expanded scope of USDA specialty crops inspection and audit functions. On Sept. 24, 2021, AMS began using SCION for processed lot inspections, plant surveys, and USDA Good Agricultural Practices audits conducted by federal personnel. Customers of those services will begin to see new SCION-issued certifications. Two subsequent releases will support the entirety of USDA’s specialty crops inspection and audit program by mid-2022.
As AMS further deploys SCION, stakeholders may receive either traditional inspection and audit documents, or SCION-generated outputs. The new output documents may differ slightly from current formats and will be identifiable by the designation “ES” on the form name. Both the traditional and SCION-generated inspection certificates and audit reports are official USDA documents.
More information about SCION and examples of current and SCION certificates and audit reports are available at https://www.ams.usda.gov/services/scion.