Last Friday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a final rule that reapportions membership on the Florida Tomato Committee under the federal marketing order for Tomatoes Grown in Florida. This action changes the number of apportioned seats in each district from six to five.

Amendments to the marketing order in 2020 reduced the size of the committee membership from 12 to 10. This action is necessary to bring the number of apportioned seats in each district in line with the reduced number of committee members and better reflect the composition of the industry.

The final rule was published in the Federal Register on Oct. 15, 2021, and becomes effective Nov. 15, 2021.

More information about the marketing order regulating the handling of tomatoes produced in Florida is available on the 966 Florida Tomatoes webpage on the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) website.

Authorized by the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, marketing orders are industry-driven programs that help producers 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 crop marketing orders and agreements to ensure fiscal accountability and program integrity.

More information about federal marketing orders is available on AMS’s Marketing Orders and Agreements webpage.