Dealing with Lacey Act import declaration issues and revised import requirements are among the topics of proposed and final regulations the Department of Agriculture is working to complete. The USDA’s most recent semiannual regulatory agenda lists the following regulations affecting international trade in agricultural products that could be issued within the next year, with expected timeframes for issuance of the rules indicated in parentheses.
- a final rule to list China as eligible to export to the U.S. poultry products from birds slaughtered in China (July 2019, previously November 2018; proposed rule published in June 2017)
- a final rule amending the bovine spongiform encephalopathy and scrapie regulations regarding the importation of live sheep, goats, and wild ruminants and their embryos, semen, products, and byproducts (July 2019, previously November 2018; proposed rule published July 2016)
- a final rule changing reporting requirements for fruit, vegetable, and specialty crop imports to implement the use of electronic form submissions (July 2019, previously April; proposed rule issued December 2016)
- final rules to list China, Vietnam, and Thailand as eligible to export Siluriformes fish and fish products to the U.S. (September 2019)
- a proposed rule on strengthening organic enforcement that would, among other things, require imported organic products to be accompanied by an electronic import certificate to validate organic status and require import certificates to be submitted in the Automated Commercial Environment (September 2019; previously March)
- a proposed rule to expand the categories of meat and poultry product labels that will be deemed generically approved and not required to be submitted to USDA (October 2019; first time published)
- a final rule establishing an exception to the Lacey Act import declaration requirement for products containing a minimal amount of plant materials (December 2019, previously September; proposed rule issued July 2018)
- a proposed rule that would establish standards allowing USDA to recognize compartments for animal disease status, similar to the recognition process for regions
- a proposed rule to update the regulations on the importation, interstate movement, and environmental release of genetically engineered organisms
- a final rule to ease restrictions on the importation of some plant pests, establish criteria for the movement and environmental release of biological control organisms, and revise the regulations regarding the movement of soil
- final rules adding Honduras and Poland to the list of countries eligible to export poultry products to the U.S.