June 07, 2023 — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced that producers of walnuts grown in California voted to amend their federal marketing.
The amendments will eliminate mandatory inspection and certification of inshell and shelled walnuts, and of shelled walnuts for processing; create a new mechanism for determining and collecting handler assessments; add authority to charge interest for late payments; establish an assessment rate of $0.0125 per inshell pound of walnuts; expand the definition of “to handle” to include “receive”; and remove volume control authority. In addition, conforming changes necessary to effectuate the amendments to the marketing order will be made.
The amendments were supported by more than two-thirds of the growers voting in the referendum, or by those representing at least two-thirds of the volume of walnuts grown by those voting in the referendum.
More information about the marketing order is available on the 984 California Walnuts webpage on AMS’s website. Information about federal marketing orders is available on AMS’s Marketing Orders and Agreements webpage page or by contacting the Market Development Division at (202) 720-8085.
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. AMS provides oversight to fruit vegetable and specialty crops marketing orders to ensure fiscal accountability and program integrity.