U.S. Department of Agriculture

News & Analysis as of

Barnhardt Manufacturing Earns USDA Biobased Product Certification Label

On April 11, 2014, Barnhardt Manufacturing Company (Barnhardt) announced that its HyDri™ Cotton product has earned a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Certified Biobased Product label under the Department's BioPreferred...more

Food and Beverage Alert (US)

This regular publication by DLA Piper lawyers focuses on helping clients navigate the ever-changing business, legal and regulatory landscape. - Supporting healthy food options for students. On April 3, Senators Heidi...more

Real World Implications of Forest Service’s New Process for Finalizing Records Of Decision

About a year ago, the Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) issued a final rule establishing a ?new and exclusive process for filing objections to certain proposed National Forest Service (“NFS”) ?projects and activities (78...more

USDA’s New Poultry Production Regulations Put Georgia Workers and the Public at Risk

Georgia is part of the U.S. poultry belt — the area of the country with the greatest concentration of chicken and turkey meat processing plants. Many jobs in the poultry production industry are extremely hazardous. Jobsite...more

First Lady And Nutrition: USDA And FDA Propose Sweeping Food Labeling And Marketing Regulations

Today, First Lady Michelle Obama and the Food and Drug Administration released two long-awaited proposed regulations that would for the first time in 20 years make significant changes to the nutrition information found on...more

38 Michigan Counties Designated As Primary Natural Disaster Areas By USDA

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated 38 counties in Michigan, with three different designations, as primary natural disaster areas due to multiple disasters. Qualified ranchers and farm operators in the...more

Growing Michigan - Fourth Quarter 2013

In This Issue: - Proposed EPA Water Rule Could Expand Regulatory Authority Over Streams and Wetlands - USDA Finalizes Import Regulations for "Mad Cow Disease" - Organic Farmers Effected by Farm Bill Extension...more

California Appellate Court Holds That Federal Law Preempts Unfair Competition Law Claims Tied to Organic Label

In a case of first impression in the state courts, a California appellate court delivered an early Christmas present Dec. 23 to beleaguered food and beverage companies facing an avalanche of lawsuits under California’s Unfair...more

USDA Finalizes Import Regulations For “Mad Cow Disease”

In November, the USDA announced a final rule that will align the Agency’s import regulations for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE or “mad cow disease”) with international standards. According to a USDA November news...more

How Will the Rise of Google Glass Impact the Food Industry?

Google glasses could impact the food industry in two ways. It could feed a growing consumer demand to know more about its food and it could better enable federal agencies to gather evidence during an inspection....more

Crop Insurance Considerations And Common Mistakes

With federal crop insurance now available to Michigan tart cherry growers and with other farmers considering or reconsidering crop insurance following adverse weather conditions in recent years, it is important to understand...more

USDA Announces $181 Million Loan Guarantee Authority Under the Section 9003 Biorefinery Assistance Loan Guarantee Program

On October 2, 2013, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) published a long-awaited Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for the Section 9003 Biorefinery Assistance Loan Guarantee Program (9003 Program). This...more

U.S. Federal Government Shutdown: Daily Update #9

The Elevator Speech Overview - Friday was the eleventh day of the government shutdown, with less than a week – six days – remaining until the Treasury says the U.S. will hit its debt ceiling. Senate Republicans met...more

Energy And Environment Update -- October 8, 2013

In This Issue: Energy and Climate Debate; Congress; Administration; Department of Agriculture; Department of Energy; Department of Interior; Department of Justice; Department of State; Department of Treasury;...more

Housing Market Largely Escapes Damage From Government Shutdown, For Now

The federal government shut down at the stroke of midnight on September 30th as the Congress failed to pass a bill to continue funding the government. The repercussions are many, including preventing 800,000 Americans from...more

Emergency Powers And Emergency Bylaws Bill Enacted

Now Corporations Can Be Like the Boy Scouts - Thanks to the efforts of the Corporations Committee of the Business Law Section of the California State Bar, the legislature last week enacted and the Governor has signed...more

The Reasonable Consumer’s Understanding of “All Natural” – Legal or Factual Issue?

Would “reasonable consumers” have regarded Paul Cezanne as highly had he painted numerous versions of still life with froot? In the ongoing California battle over lawsuits against food companies alleging false and...more

SNAPshot Report

The public debate over SNAP cuts and other reforms has continued in anticipation of Congress’ return after the Labor Day weekend. This week, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) released a study strongly...more

Health Care Reform Update -- July 1, 2013

In This Issue: Leading the News; Implementation of the Affordable Care Act; Other HHS and Federal Regulatory Initiatives; Other Congressional and State Initiatives; Other Health Care News; and Hearings and Mark-Ups...more

False Advertising Claims Against Tropicana Survive Motion to Dismiss

We have frequently reported on how courts have addressed preemption arguments in the growing number of mislabeling suits that have been filed against food companies. Last week, a federal court in New Jersey denied Tropicana’s...more

The Supreme Court Holds the Just Compensation Clause Can Be Used as a Defense

Until this week, it had almost become a truism that the Just Compensation Clause only required that the Government pay for whatever property it took, and imposed no other restrictions. That is, the Just Compensation Clause...more

Project Finance and USDA Rural Utilities Service – Request for Comments

On June 5, Acting Agriculture Under Secretary for Rural Development Doug O’Brien announced publication of an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) requesting public comment on expanding renewable energy and project...more

Monsanto Further Complicates The Biotech Foods Debate

Monsanto Co. made news, and some new enemies, recently when it was discovered that the company’s experimental genetically modified wheat – planted in several states between 1998 and 2005 – was found to have escaped...more

Introduction of A New Agricultural Guestworker Bill

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) introduced on April 26, 2013 the Agricultural Guestworker “AG” Act (H.R. 1773) a bill to provide American farmers with a workable temporary agricultural guestworker...more

Defining “Natural”: The National Organic Program Offers Guidance That May Impact Organic and Nonorganic Food Producers Alike

The USDA’s National Organic Program (“NOP”) recently issued draft guidance that organic and nonorganic food manufacturers alike should be aware of. In addressing what is required to certify a product as “organic,” the NOP has...more

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