Cotton Import Fee Falls

Assessments paid by importers of cotton and cotton-containing products under the Cotton Research and Promotion Order will decline 5.4 percent under a direct final rule issued by the Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service. This rule also amends the Import Assessment Table, which indicates the total assessment rate due for each HTSUS number subject to assessment, to reflect this change.

Assessments will be decreased from $0.012222/kg to $0.011562/kg to reflect a decrease in the average weighted price of upland cotton received by U.S. farmers in 2019. The revenues generated by these assessments are used to finance research and promotion programs designed to increase consumer demand for upland cotton in the U.S. and international markets.

This rule will be effective as of Dec. 4 unless significant adverse comment is received by Nov. 4, in which case it will be withdrawn.

For more information, please contact Elise Shibles at (415) 490-1403.

Dairy TRQ Import License Fee Declines

The USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service has announced that its fee for each license it issues to a person or firm authorizing the importation of certain dairy articles subject to tariff-rate quotas will decline from $300 to $290 for the 2021 TRQ year.

Subject articles (which include butter, dried milk, and various cheeses) may only be entered into the U.S. at the in-quota tariff rates by or for the account of a person or firm to whom such licenses have been issued and only in accordance with the terms and conditions of the regulation. Licenses are issued on a calendar year basis and each license authorizes the holder to import a specified quantity and type of dairy article from a specified country of origin.

Flowers from Jamaica and Germany

Effective Oct. 5, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has revised the requirements for commercial shipments of amaranth (callaloo) Amaranthus sp from Jamaica. All shipments of amaranth arriving in the U.S. must now be accompanied by not only an import permit but also a phytosanitary certificate attesting that the shipment is free of quarantine pests. Fumigation with methyl bromide will remain a treatment option if quarantine pests are detected upon arrival at the U.S. port of entry.

In addition, only commercial consignments of amaranth from Jamaica are allowed entry. Importations brought in by travelers as passenger baggage and in other non-commercial pathways are now prohibited.

Separately, APHIS is considering a request to authorize the importation of moth orchid for planting from Germany. APHIS has drafted a pest risk assessment that lists the potential pests likely to remain on this commodity upon importation if no mitigation is applied. Comments on this assessment, including information that might lead APHIS to revise its assessment before identifying pest mitigations and proceeding with the commodity import approval process, are due by Nov. 5.

Blueberries from Chile

APHIS has determined to revise the requirements for importing fresh blueberries from Chile by removing the methyl bromide fumigation requirement for blueberries from regions VIII and XVI. Imports under the revised requirements may be authorized beginning Oct. 8.

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