SACRAMENTO — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will conduct a referendum Feb. 24-March 6, 2020, on a proposed amendment to the federal marketing order for olives grown in California. The proposal would amend the marketing order, which currently specifies five producer and five handler members are needed to constitute a quorum. The change to the quorum requirements would specify 10 members or alternates acting in their place would constitute a quorum. To become effective, the proposed amendment must be approved by two-thirds of the olive producers voting in the referendum or be supported by olive producers representing at least two-thirds of the volume of olives produced by voters in the referendum. The notice of the referendum was published in the Federal Register on Feb. 27, 2020.
The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will mail ballots and voting instructions to all olive producers of record in California. To be eligible to vote, the producers must have grown olives in the regulated area during the period of Aug. 1, 2018, through July 31, 2019. Eligible producers who have not received a ballot by March 12, 2020, may request one by calling Kathie Notoro at (559) 538-1672, faxing (559) 487-5906 or mailing the request to the California Marketing Field Office, Marketing Order and Agreement Division, Specialty Crops Program, AMS, USDA, 2202 Monterey Street, Suite 102-B, Fresno, California 93721-3129.
Information about the marketing order is available on the 932 California Olives page on the AMS website.
Authorized by the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, marketing orders are industry-driven programs that help growers 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 29 fruit, vegetable, and specialty crops marketing orders and agreements, which helps ensure fiscal accountability and program integrity. More information about federal marketing orders is available on the Marketing Orders and Agreements page of the AMS website or by contacting the Marketing Order and Agreement Division at (202) 720-2491.
–USDA NRCS California
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