The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced that a majority of pear growers in Oregon and Washington voted to continue their federal marketing order program.
This order, administered locally by the Fresh Pear and Processed Pear Committees, provides authority for grade, size and quality regulations, for inspection and for research projects to benefit pear growers and processors in these two states. A continuance referendum is required every six years. Growers who produced pears in Oregon and Washington from July 1, 2015, through June 30, 2016, were eligible to vote in the referendum held from Feb. 15 through March 1, 2017.
Ninety-seven percent of the Oregon and Washington fresh pear growers who voted, representing 90 percent of the volume voted, favored continuing the marketing order. Continuation of the marketing order also was favored by 89 percent of Oregon processed pear growers voting, representing 97 percent of the volume voted, and by 97 percent of Washington processed pear growers voting, representing 68 percent of the volume voted.
For the marketing order to continue, it required approval either by two-thirds of the fresh pear growers voting in the referendum or by fresh pear growers representing two-thirds of the pears produced during the production year. Growers of pears for processing must meet the same approval thresholds.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) would have considered terminating the marketing order if continuance was not favored by growers or processors represented in the referendum.
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