January 3, 2014
On Tuesday, December 31, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced plans to extend a public comment period by 60 days to March 4, 2014 to allow for additional input on “how agricultural coexistence in the United States can be strengthened.” More specifically, USDA seeks comments to help further agricultural coexistence by identifying “ways to foster communication and collaboration among those involved in diverse agricultural production systems.”
Coexistence is defined as “the concurrent cultivation of crops produced through diverse agricultural systems including traditionally produced, organic, identity preserved, and genetically engineered crops.”
USDA announced the comment period in response to the USDA’s Advisory Committee on Biotechnology & 21st Century Agriculture (AC21) and its recommendations from a November 2012 final report entitled “Enhancing Coexistence: A Report of the AC21 to the Secretary of Agriculture.” In the area of education and outreach, the committee recommended that USDA foster communication and collaboration to strengthen coexistence.
This comment period is an opportunity for farmers to share their experiences with trying to prevent GE contamination, and for farmers and other concerned citizens to encourage USDA to adopt contamination prevention policies as well as policies to provide for compensation for those economically harmed by contamination.
For more information on agricultural coexistence and AC21, please click here.
USDA published the original notice for public comment on strengthening agricultural coexistence in the United States in November 2013, with a comment deadline of January 3, 2014.
To see the Federal Register notice announcing the extension of the comment period to March 4, 2014, click here.
Comments may be submitted in one of the following two ways:
Docket No. APHIS-2013-0047, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238
For further information, please contact:
Ms. Meghan Klingel, Acting Advisor for State and Stakeholder Relations, Office of the Deputy Administrator, LPA, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 51, Riverdale, MD 20737-1231; (301) 851-4055, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.