Starting on October 1, 2023, the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) will enact changes to its rates for voluntary grading, inspection, certification, auditing and laboratory services for a variety of agricultural commodities, including fruits and vegetables.
According to the USDA, these increases are based on cost-based analyses that indicated the need to increase user fee rates to offset rising operational costs. Fee rates will remain the same for services where the current rates cover costs.
Some of the services that will have a cost increase include quality and condition inspections for whole lots; quality and condition half lot or condition-only inspections for whole lots; quality and condition or condition-only inspections for additional lots of the same product; dockside inspections; inspections for all hourly work; audit services and more.
Click to see the USDA’s list of specialty crop rates here.