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Proposed Rule

Meeting of the National Organic Standards Board

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Start Preamble Start Printed Page 2373

AGENCY:

Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Public meeting.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended, the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is announcing a meeting of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) to assist the USDA in the development of standards for substances to be used in organic production and to advise the Secretary of Agriculture on any other aspects of the implementation of the Organic Foods Production Act.

DATES:

The Board will receive public comments via webinars on April 17 and 19, 2018, from 1:00 p.m. to approximately 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time (ET). An in-person meeting will be held April 25-27, 2018, from 8:30 a.m. to approximately 6:00 p.m. Mountain Time. In-person oral comments will be heard on Wednesday, April 25, and Thursday, April 26, 2018. The deadline to submit written comments and/or sign up for oral comment at either the webinar or face-to-face meeting is 11:59 p.m. ET, April 4, 2018.

ADDRESSES:

The webinars are virtual and will be accessed via the internet and/or phone. Access information will be available on the AMS website prior to the webinars. The in-person meeting will take place at the Tucson University Park Hotel, 880 East Second Street, Tucson, Arizona 85719, United States. Detailed information pertaining to the webinars and in-person meeting can be found at www.ams.usda.gov/​NOSBMeetings.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ms. Michelle Arsenault, Advisory Committee Specialist, National Organic Standards Board, USDA-AMS-NOP, 1400 Independence Ave. SW, Room 2642-S, Mail Stop 0268, Washington, DC 20250-0268; Phone: (202) 720-3252; Email: nosb@ams.usda.gov.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The NOSB makes recommendations to the Department of Agriculture about whether substances should be allowed or prohibited in organic production and/or handling, assists in the development of standards for organic production, and advises the Secretary on other aspects of the implementation of the Organic Foods Production Act. The NOSB is holding a public meeting to discuss and vote on proposed recommendations to the USDA, receive updates from the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) on issues pertaining to organic agriculture, and receive comments from the organic community. The meeting and webinars are open to the public. All meeting documents, including the meeting agenda, NOSB proposals and discussion documents, instructions for submitting and viewing public comments, and instructions for requesting time for oral comments, will be available on the AMS website at www.ams.usda.gov/​NOSBMeetings. Please check the website periodically for updates. Meeting topics will encompass a wide range of issues, including substances petitioned for addition to or deletion from the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (National List), substances on the National List that are under sunset review, and guidance on organic policies. Participants and attendees may take photos and video at the meeting, but not in a manner that disturbs the proceedings.

Public Comments: Comments should address specific topics noted on the meeting agenda.

Written Comments: Written public comments will be accepted on or before 11:59 p.m. ET on April 4, 2018, via http://www.regulations.gov: Document #AMS-NOP-17-0057. Comments submitted after this date will be provided to the NOSB, but Board members may not have adequate time to consider those comments prior to making recommendations. The NOP strongly prefers comments to be submitted electronically. However, written comments may also be submitted (i.e., postmarked) via mail to the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT by or before the deadline.

Oral Comments: The NOSB is providing the public multiple dates and opportunities to provide oral comments and will accommodate as many individuals and organizations as time permits. Persons or organizations wishing to make oral comments must pre-register by 11:59 p.m. ET, April 4, 2018, and can register for only one speaking slot: Either during the webinars scheduled for April 17 and 19, or at the in-person meeting, scheduled for April 25-27, 2018. Due to the limited time allotted for in-person public comments during the in-person meeting, commenters are strongly encouraged to comment during the webinar(s). Instructions for registering and participating in the webinar can be found at www.ams.usda.gov/​NOSBMeetings.

Meeting Accommodations: The meeting hotel is ADA Compliant, and the USDA provides reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities where appropriate. If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in this public meeting, please notify the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Determinations for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Start Signature

Dated: December 26, 2017.

Bruce Summers,

Acting Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2017-28170 Filed 1-16-18; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-02-P