Revision of Three U.S. Grade Standards for Carrots

 
CONTENT
Federal Register, Volume 85 Issue 122 (Wednesday, June 24, 2020)
[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 122 (Wednesday, June 24, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 37820-37822]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-12828]
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Notices
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Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 122 / Wednesday, June 24, 2020 /
Notices
[[Page 37820]]
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Agricultural Marketing Service
[Document Number AMS-SC-19-0036, SC-19-330]
Revision of Three U.S. Grade Standards for Carrots
AGENCY: Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.
ACTION: Notice.
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SUMMARY: The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) of the Department of
Agriculture (USDA) is revising the U.S. Standards for Grades of Topped
Carrots, U.S. Standards for Grades of Bunched Carrots, and U.S.
Standards for Grades of Carrots with Short Trimmed Tops. AMS is adding
more U.S. No. 1 grades to accommodate carrots of colors other than
orange, orange red, and orange scarlet. The current U.S. No. 1 grades
will remain unchanged. In addition, AMS is removing the Unclassified
section and renumbering sections due to the additional grades.
DATES: July 24, 2020.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: David G. Horner, USDA, Specialty Crops
Inspection Division, 100 Riverside Parkway, Suite 101, Fredericksburg,
VA 22406, by phone (540) 361-1128; fax (540) 361-1199; or, email
[email protected]. Copies of the revised U.S. Standards for Grades
of Topped Carrots, U.S. Standards for Grades of Bunched Carrots, and
U.S. Standards for Grades of Carrots with Short Trimmed Tops are
available at http://www.regulations.gov or on the AMS website at
www.ams.usda.gov/grades-standards/vegetables.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 203(c) of the Agricultural Marketing
Act of 1946 (7 U.S.C. 1621-1627) as amended, directs and authorizes the
Secretary of Agriculture ``to develop and improve standards of quality,
condition, quantity, grade, and packaging, and recommend and
demonstrate such standards in order to encourage uniformity and
consistency in commercial practices.''
 AMS is committed to carrying out this authority in a manner that
facilitates the marketing of agricultural commodities and makes copies
of official standards available upon request. The U.S. Standards for
Grades of Fruits and Vegetables that are voluntary and no longer appear
in the Code of Federal Regulations (60 FR 62172, December 4, 1995) are
maintained by AMS at: http://www.ams.usda.gov/grades-standards. AMS is
revising these U.S. Standards for Grades using the procedures that
appear in part 36 of Title 7 of the Code of Federal Regulations (7 CFR
part 36).
Background
 AMS continually reviews all fruit and vegetable grade standards to
ensure their usefulness to the industry, modernize language, and remove
duplicative terminology. On December 22, 2008, AMS published a notice
in the Federal Register (73 FR 78286) regarding revising the three U.S.
grade standards for carrots to accommodate colors other than orange,
orange red, and orange scarlet. The notice proposed revising the color
section to allow carrots of any color characteristic of the variety to
be graded using the standards. Also, the similar varietal
characteristic requirement would have been amended to allow mixed
colors and/or types when designated as a mixed or specialty pack. The
industry as a whole opposed these revisions on the basis that non-
orange carrots include heirloom carrots that may not have been bred for
uniformity and may not have the same type of characteristics of orange
carrots.
 After gathering more feedback from the industry, AMS developed
additional grades to accommodate other colors. For the Topped Carrots,
the two new grades are U.S. No. 1 Color and U.S. No. 1 Jumbo Color. For
the Bunched and Short Trimmed Carrots, the new grade is U.S. No. 1
Color. The current grades remain unchanged. The new grades are
identical to the current grades except for the color requirement (the
following tables summarize the revisions).
 AMS spoke with several major U.S. carrot growers by telephone and
emailed them a discussion paper on the proposed revisions. One major
U.S. carrot grower stated that they were in favor of establishing a
U.S. grade for colored carrots. No one opposed the changes.
 On January 28, 2020, AMS published a notice in the Federal Register
(85 FR 4913) proposing to revise the three U.S. carrot standards by
adding more U.S. No. 1 grades to accommodate carrots of colors other
than orange, orange red, and orange scarlet. In addition, AMS proposed
to remove the Unclassified section and renumber sections due to the
additional grades. The public submission period closed March 30, 2020,
with 10 comments submitted.
 All of the comments were submitted by the general public. Six
comments supported the proposed revisions; three were beyond the scope
of the notice; and one individual did not support the proposed changes
due to not understanding AMS' intentions. The following addresses those
misunderstandings.
 The individual stated, ``The USDA already knows what
constitutes a good quality carrot.'' From additional remarks, the
individual did not understand that AMS is part of the USDA. It is the
USDA that proposed these revisions.
 The individual stated, ``There are standards for carrots
that are not orange, orange red, or orange scarlet.'' There were no
U.S. grade standards for carrots unless they were orange, orange red,
or orange scarlet. For example, a maroon colored carrot could not be
certified to a U.S. grade.
 The individual stated, ``There are already provisions in
place for color defects in carrots . . . Adding mixed colors to the
standard could jeopardize the entire quality check system.'' This
comment implies that the commenter believes ``mixed colors'' refers to
an individual carrot of more than one color. ``Mixed colors'' refers to
packing carrots of different solid colors in the same package.
Individual carrots are not more than one color. The industry already
markets mixed color packs; however, the package could not be assigned a
U.S. grade.
 In addition to including the new U.S. No. 1 grades, AMS is removing
the Unclassified section from the carrot standards. AMS is removing
this section in all standards as they are revised because it is no
longer considered necessary. The category was never a grade and only
showed that no grade was applied to the lot.
[[Page 37821]]
 Finally, some sections are renumbered due to the additional grades.
The following tables summarize the revisions.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Previous Revised Summary
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 U.S. Topped Carrot Standards
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Sec. 51.2360 U.S. Extra Sec. 51.2360 U.S. All remain
 No. 1. Extra No. 1. unchanged.
Sec. 51.2361 U.S. No. 1... Sec. 51.2361 U.S.
 No. 1.
Sec. 51.2362 U.S. No. 1 Sec. 51.2362 U.S.
 Jumbo. No. 1 Jumbo.
 Sec. 51.2363 U.S. U.S. No. 1 Color and
 No. 1 Color and U.S. No. 1 Jumbo
 U.S. No. 1 Jumbo Color grades are
 Color. added to
 ``U.S. No. 1 Color'' accommodate other
 or ``U.S. No. 1 colors. The U.S.
 Jumbo Color'' No. 1 Color and
 consists of carrots U.S. No. 1 Jumbo
 which meet the Color grades are
 requirements of the identical to the
 U.S. No. 1 or U.S. U.S. No. 1 and U.S.
 No. 1 Jumbo grades No. 1 Jumbo grades,
 except for fairly except for the
 well colored. All color requirement.
 roots must show The new grades
 good characteristic ensure all grades
 color, which means are premium
 the root has a quality, provide
 uniform greater
 characteristic flexibility, and
 color for the bring the standards
 variety over in line with
 practically the current marketing
 entire surface. trends.
 Roots may be
 comingled with
 varieties of
 different colors,
 provided roots are
 of the same type.
 (See Sec.
 51.2365.).
Sec. 51.2363 U.S. No. 2... Sec. 51.2364 U.S. Remains the same
 No. 2. except section
 number changes from
 51.2363 to 51.2364.
 The U.S. No. 2
 grade does not have
 any color
 requirements.
Sec. 51.2364 Unclassified. Removed............. AMS is removing this
``Unclassified''' consists section in all
 of carrots which have not standards as they
 been classified in are revised as it
 accordance with any of the is no longer
 foregoing grades. The term considered
 ``unclassified'' is not a necessary. The
 grade within the meaning of category was never
 these standards, but is a grade and only
 provided as a designation showed that no
 to show that no grade has grade was applied
 been applied to the lot. to the lot.
Sec. 51.2365 Tolerances . Sec. 51.2365 The revised U.S. No.
 . . (a) Defects . . . (2) Tolerances . . . 1 Color and U.S.
 U.S. No. 1 and U.S. No. 1 (a) Defects . . . No. 1 Jumbo Color
 Jumbo grades. Ten percent (2) U.S. No. 1, grades have the
 for carrots in any lot U.S. No. 1 Jumbo, same tolerances as
 which fail to meet the U.S. No. 1 Color, the other grades in
 requirements of the grade: and U.S. No. 1 this section, which
 Provided, That not more Jumbo Color grades. all remain
 than one-half of this Ten percent for unchanged.
 amount, or 5 percent, shall carrots in any lot
 be allowed for defects which fail to meet
 causing serious damage, the requirements of
 including therein not more the grade:
 than 2 percent for carrots Provided, That not
 affected by soft rot. more than one-half
 of this amount, or
 5 percent, shall be
 allowed for defects
 causing serious
 damage, including
 therein not more
 than 2 percent for
 carrots affected by
 soft rot.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 U.S. Bunched Carrot Standards
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sec. 51.2455 U.S. No. 1... Sec. 51.2455 U.S. Remains unchanged.
 No. 1.
 Sec. 51.2456 U.S. U.S. No. 1 Color
 No. 1 Color. grade is added to
 ``U.S. No. 1 Color'' accommodate other
 consists of carrots colors. The U.S.
 which meet the No. 1 Color is
 requirements of identical to the
 U.S. No. 1 except U.S. No. 1 grade,
 for fairly well except for the
 colored. All roots color requirement.
 must show good The new grade
 characteristic ensures all grades
 color, which means are premium
 the root has a quality, provides
 uniform greater
 characteristic flexibility, and
 color for the brings the
 variety over standards in line
 practically the with current
 entire surface. marketing trends.
 Roots may be
 comingled with
 varieties of
 different colors,
 provided roots are
 of the same type.
Sec. 51.2456 U.S. Sec. 51.2457 U.S. Remains the same
 Commercial. Commercial. except section
 number changes from
 51.2456 to 51.2457.
Sec. 51.2457 Unclassified. Removed............. AMS is removing this
``Unclassified'' consists of section in all
 carrots which have not been standards as they
 classified in accordance are revised as it
 with either of the is no longer
 foregoing grades. The term considered
 ``unclassified'' is not a necessary. The
 grade within the meaning of category was never
 these standards, but is a grade and only
 provided as a designation showed that no
 to show that no grade has grade was applied
 been applied to the lot. to the lot.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 U.S. Short Trimmed Carrot Standards
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sec. 51.2485 U.S. No. 1... Sec. 51.2485 U.S. Remains unchanged.
 No. 1.
[[Page 37822]]

 Sec. 51.2486 U.S. U.S. No. 1 Color
 No. 1 Color. grade is added to
 ``U.S. No. 1 Color'' accommodate other
 consists of carrots colors. The U.S.
 which meet the No. 1 Color grade
 requirements of is identical to the
 U.S. No. 1 except U.S. No. 1 grade,
 for fairly well except for the
 colored. All roots color requirement.
 must show good The new grade
 characteristic ensures all grades
 color, which means are premium
 the root has a quality, provides
 uniform greater
 characteristic flexibility, and
 color for the brings the
 variety over standards in line
 practically the with current
 entire surface. marketing trends.
 Roots may be
 comingled with
 varieties of
 different colors,
 provided roots are
 of the same type.
Sec. 51.2486 U.S. Sec. 51.2487 U.S. Remains the same
 Commercial. Commercial. except section
 number changes from
 51.2486 to 51.2487.
Sec. 51.2487 Unclassified. Removed............. AMS is removing this
``Unclassified'' consists of section in all
 carrots which have not been standards as they
 classified in accordance are revised as it
 with either of the is no longer
 foregoing grades. The term considered
 ``unclassified'' is not a necessary. The
 grade within the meaning of category was never
 these standards, but is a grade and only
 provided as a designation showed that no
 to show that no grade has grade was applied
 been applied to the lot. to the lot.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bruce Summers,
Administrator,Agricultural Marketing Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-12828 Filed 6-23-20; 8:45 am]
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