Pollinator Stewardship Council President’s Letter

A Letter From Our President:

As 2021 draws to a close and 2022 beckons, the Pollinator Stewardship Council (PSC) would like to thank everyone for their support and encouragement over the years.  The Pollinator Stewardship Council remains fully committed to our mission “To defend managed and native pollinators vital to a sustainable food supply, from the adverse impact of pesticides.”

Since 2006 when PSC board member David Hackenberg first drew national attention to the mysterious bee problem now known as CCD, beekeepers and research scientists have worked tirelessly to understand the problem and address the root causes.

The first collaborative effort of the American Beekeeping Federation (ABF) and the American Honey Producers Association (AHPA) was named the Bayer Beekeeper Dialogue Committee (2009-11).  After two years of beekeepers’ good faith efforts with the pesticide industry, we realized that there was no reciprocation. The united effort of the beekeeping organizations continued without Bayer, under the new name of National Honey Bee Advisory Board (2011-14).  Since 2015, the PSC has taken over the mantle.

Good science has always been at the basis of our work, and collaboration with scientists from USDA, EPA, and academia has helped us understand the mysteries of honey bee decline – which we now understand to be a broader insect apocalypse impacting many more species beyond honey bees.

The PSC and our board have been meeting with the EPA and USDA since 2006.  We understand the policy challenges of pollinator protection. Through these years it has always seemed like our efforts were for naught.  Insiders consistently whispered to us that the game was rigged in favor of huge corporations like Monsanto, Ag Chem China, and Bayer.  Today thanks to four brave whistleblowers within EPA and a brilliant piece of investigative journalism, we are learning the extent of that “influence.

A hopeful note is the appointment of Michal Freedhof and Jake Li to the two highest positions within the EPA Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP).  Both are strong people with backgrounds in tackling thorny environmental issues such as PFAS chemicals.Their presence sends a clear signal to staff within the Office of Pesticide Programs.  We are in communication with both directors and feel optimistic that good science and the public’s best interests may finally govern pesticide registration and oversight. At the same time, we remain dedicated to building power outside of the halls of EPA to demand these changes.

The latest example of PSC’s impact in the protection of pollinators is our recent legal victory in California banning the use of the destructive pesticide sulfoxaflor.  With the assistance of our dedicated legal team at Earthjustice, a California Superior court ruled on December 3, 2021, that use of this deadly chemical violated state environmental law.  The members of Pollinator Stewardship Council are committed to the long-haul game of protecting pollinators from pesticides.  This could not have been accomplished without your help and with your continued support we can make real progress in 2022. Your contribution at this critical time will make a difference, and we appreciate your dedication to the protection of our pollinators.  

Steve Ellis, President

Pollinator Stewardship Council

Pesticides Can Affect Multiple Generations of Bees Study Finds Reduced Bee Reproduction Over 2 Years

Pesticides Can Affect Multiple Generations of Bees
Study Finds Reduced Bee Reproduction Over 2 Years
by Amy Quinton
November 29, 2021

A new study from researchers at the University of California, Davis, finds that pesticides not only directly affect bee health, but effects from past exposure can carry over to future generations. The study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests that bees may require multiple generations to recover from even a single application.

Bees play a critical role in agricultural ecosystems, providing pollination for many important crops. In most agricultural areas, bees may be exposed to pesticides multiple times, over multiple years. Studies to date have only looked at exposure to pesticides in one life stage or over one year.

“It was important for us to understand how exposure persists from one generation to the next,” said lead author Clara Stuligross, a Ph.D. candidate in ecology at UC Davis. “Our findings suggest we need to be doing more to help mitigate risks or we limit critical pollination services.”

Reproduction drops
In the study, the blue orchard bee was exposed to imidacloprid — the most commonly used neonicotinoid in California — according to amounts recommended on the label. Neonicotinoids are a class of insecticides chemically related to nicotine. Stuligross said the exposures were similar to what the bees would experience in the field. Female bees that were exposed to the insecticide as larvae had 20% fewer offspring than bees not exposed. Those bees that were exposed as larvae and as adults had 44% fewer offspring.

“We gave them one application in the first year and one in the second — that’s a pretty standard exposure. Even then, we saw strong results that added up, each exposure reducing fertility,” said Stuligross.

Populations affected
Because the impacts of insecticides tend to be additive across life stages, repeated exposure has profound implications for population growth. The research showed that bees exposed to neonicotinoids in both the first and second year resulted in a 72% lower population growth rate compared to bees not exposed at all. Neonicotinoids also persist in the environment long after application.

The study reveals how past pesticide exposure can have lasting impacts, said co-author Neal Williams, professor of entomology at UC Davis. “One could draw parallels to human health where impacts early in development show up much later in life,” he said. “We just didn’t know the same was true for bees. Now we do and we need to continue to manage risks appropriately.”

The study was supported by a UC Davis Jastro Research Award, a UC Davis Ecology Graduate Research Fellowship, a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, the National Science Foundation and the UC Davis Department of Entomology through the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Bee Research Facility and Laidlaw Endowment.

https://www.ucdavis.edu/climate/news/pesticides-can-affect-multiple-generations-bees

Beekeeping and Agritourism

A new revenue stream is gaining traction with beekeepers, agritourism venues! Clint Walker of Walker Honey Farm talks with our TBA members about the business opportunity of helping connect non-beekeepers to bees. This is a mutually beneficial experience where the guests are able to better understand and appreciate bees. It’s also a great way to raise awareness for your brand and your business. Watch his Texas Beekeepers Association Annual Conference video https://youtu.be/0F9dhNX3UO8
The American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agricultural has created a new app dedicated to connecting these venues and the public. You can sign your agritourism venue up for free on the American Farm Trail app created by the Foundation. Learn more about the app and other resources at https://www.agfoundation.org/news/looking-for-agritourism-operations

FDA Takes Steps to Facilitate the Export of Food under China’s New Facility Registration Requirements – Decree 248

FDA Takes Steps to Facilitate the Export of Food under China’s New Facility Registration Requirements – Decree 248
Constituent Update
December 6, 2021

The FDA is asking establishments currently exporting certain food products to China to voluntarily submit information. We are making this request in response to new facility registration requirements from China. While China has not confirmed that collecting this information is a prerequisite for U.S. establishments to export to China, the FDA is making this request as a precaution against potential trade disruption.  In April 2021, China’s General Administration of Customs (GACC) announced new registration requirements that affect all overseas food manufacturers, processors, and storage facilities of food products exported to China. These requirements are described in China’s Decree 248 and will be in effect on January 1, 2022.

Articles 7 and 8 of the Decree require the exporting countries’ competent authorities to recommend registration of establishments involved in the export to China of certain food categories:

  • Meat and meat products
  • Aquatic products
  • Dairy products
  • Bird nests and bird nest products
  • Casings
  • Bee products
  • Eggs and egg products
  • Edible oils and fats
  • Stuffed wheaten products
  • Edible grains
  • Milled grain industry products and malt
  • Fresh and dehydrated vegetables and dried beans
  • Condiments
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Dried fruits
  • Unroasted coffee beans and cocoa beans
  • Foods for special dietary purposes
  • Functional food

For products that do not fall within the 18 product categories listed in Article 7 and above, the GACC launched a system to facilitate self-registration as indicated in Article 9 of Decree 248. The USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) has published information on the self-registration process.

According to the GACC, it will continue to recognize existing registrations for establishments that export meat and meat products, aquatic products, dairy and infant formula products and bird nests and bird nest products. The FDA currently facilitates the registration of U.S. firms for seafood, dairy, and infant formula products by providing the GACC with documents that identify certified establishments and products that meet applicable U.S. requirements. U.S. firms that have applied in the FDA’s Export Listing Module (ELM) and are currently listed as certified by the GACC to export seafood, dairy, and infant formula products to China do not need to take any action at this time related to registration.

For all other categories of food, the U.S. government interprets the Decree to provide that these products are covered by the existing bilateral agreements with China, such as the Phase One Economic and Trade Agreement, and other bilateral facility registration arrangements. USTR has asked the GACC to confirm its understanding that U.S. establishments that export all other categories of products may self-register. To date the GACC has not confirmed this interpretation of Decree 248 and has failed to provide adequate further guidance for the United States.  While the United States continues to engage with China at multiple levels to ensure minimal new requirements for the United States, the FDA is taking proactive steps to maintain current market access for FDA-regulated firms in the United States that export food to China.

IMPORTANT DATES FOR U.S. ESTABLISHMENTS
As the U.S competent authority for many of the product categories named in Article 7 of Decree 248, the FDA is collecting information in the Export Listing Module (ELM) from U.S. firms that may be needed to facilitate the registration process before the new requirements go into effect on January 1, 2022.

Beginning on December 6, 2021, U.S. establishments that currently produce or store FDA-regulated products for export to China that fall into the product categories 5-18 listed above may submit an application via the FDA’s Export Listing Module (ELM), providing information for products they currently export to China to allow the FDA to facilitate registration of these establishments with China. Step-by-step instructions for using the ELM are available on the FDA’s website.

To ensure that the FDA has the relevant establishment information before the end of the year, any U.S. establishment currently exporting food products in categories 5-18 to China should submit applications to the ELM by December 17, 2021. In addition to meeting U.S. requirements, firms exporting to China are responsible for meeting relevant China regulations and requirements.

Please note that the FDA does not intend to provide a declaration of conformity or other competent authority statement directly to U.S. establishments. In the event it is needed for registration for China, the FDA may provide an attestation directly to GACC for U.S. establishments and their products that comply with applicable U.S. requirements in order to facilitate registration.

For more details on China’s requirements, additional information on the U.S. competent authority for certain products that are under the FDA’s authority or the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service’s authority, or both and for step-by-step instructions on how to apply to the ELM, visit Food Export Library and Online Applications for Export Lists.

For more information, contact the Export Certification Team at CFSANExportCertification@fda.hhs.gov.
https://www.fda.gov/food/cfsan-constituent-updates/fda-takes-steps-facilitate-export-food-under-chinas-new-facility-registration-requirements-decree

Mary Reed Resigns as Texas Chief Apiary Inspector

Mary Reed, has resigned as Chief Apiary Inspector for the State of Texas effective January 18 in order to take a position in her home state of Florida. We are sad to see her go as she has done so much for beekeepers across the State.

We’re looking forward to the future and hope that whoever fills the position lives up to the standard that Mary has set. Mary has accomplished so much in her time as Chief that positively affects Texas Beekeepers. From educating legislators at the Texas Capitol to building a foundation for resources and programs that will hopefully continue to grow in her absence. We believe her commitment to educating Texas Master Beekeepers was an efficient and targeted way to expand knowledge within the beekeeping community. This commitment as well as one to consistently learning and staying up to date on the most relevant research studies and industry news will hopefully be a crucial trait for seeking a new Chief.

Whoever seeks to fill the position will have big shoes to fill. We will be staying in touch with Texas A&M as they work to fill this position. In the interim, Texas will have Bill Baxter as the interim Chief Apiary Inspector – providing consistency in the services we expect from the Texas Apiary Inspection Service along with the other inspectors.

We look forward to working with Texas A&M while they seek to find the highest quality candidates for the position.

Labor Certification Process for the Temporary Employment of Foreign Workers in Agriculture in the United States: Adverse Effect Wage Rates for Non-Range Occupations in 2022

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Employment and Training Administration

Labor Certification Process for the Temporary Employment of Foreign Workers in Agriculture in the United States: Adverse Effect Wage Rates for Non-Range Occupations in 2022
AGENCY: Employment and Training Administration, Department of Labor.

ACTION: Notice.

SUMMARY: The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) of the Department of Labor (DOL) is issuing this notice to announce the 2022 Adverse Effect Wage Rates (AEWR) for the employment of temporary or seasonal nonimmigrant foreign workers (H-2A workers) to perform agricultural labor or services other than the herding or production of livestock on the range.
AEWRs are the minimum wage rates the DOL has determined must be offered and paid by employers to H-2A workers and workers in corresponding employment so that the wages and working conditions of workers in the United States (U.S.) similarly employed will not be adversely affected. In this notice, DOL announces updates of the AEWRs.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Brian Pasternak, Administrator, Office of Foreign Labor Certification, Employment and Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room N-5311, Washington, DC 20210, telephone: (202) 693-8200 (this is not a toll-free number). Individuals with hearing or speech impairments may access the telephone numbers above via TTY/TDD by calling the toll-free Federal Information Relay Service at 1 (877) 889-5627.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services of the Department of Homeland Security will not approve an employer’s petition for the admission of H-2A nonimmigrant temporary and seasonal agricultural workers in the U.S. unless the petitioner has received an H-2A labor certification from DOL. The labor certification provides that: (1) there are not sufficient U.S. workers who are able, willing, and qualified and who will be available at the time and place needed to perform the labor or services involved in the petition; and (2) the employment of the foreign worker(s) in such labor or services will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of workers in the U.S. similarly employed. See 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(H)(ii)(a), 1184(c)(1), and 1188(a); 8 CFR 214.2(h)(5); 20 CFR 655.100.
Adverse Effect Wage Rates for 2022

DOL’s H-2A regulations at 20 CFR 655.122(l) provide that employers must pay their H- 2A workers and workers in corresponding employment at least the highest of: (i) the AEWR; (ii) the prevailing hourly wage rate; (iii) the prevailing piece rate; (iv) the agreed-upon collective bargaining wage rate; or (v) the federal or state minimum wage rate in effect at the time the work is performed. Further, when the AEWR is adjusted during a work contract and is higher than the highest of the previous AEWR, the prevailing rate, the agreed-upon collective bargaining wage, the federal minimum wage rate, or the state minimum wage rate, the employer must pay that adjusted AEWR upon the effective date of the new rate, as provided in the applicable Federal Register Notice. See 20 CFR 655.122(l) (requiring the applicable AEWR or other wage rate to be paid based on the AEWR or rate in effect “at the time work is performed”).
On November 5, 2020, DOL published a final rule, Adverse Effect Wage Rate Methodology for the Temporary Employment of H-2A Nonimmigrants in Non-Range Occupations in the United States, 85 FR 70445 (2020 AEWR Final Rule), to establish a new methodology for setting hourly AEWRs, effective December 21, 2020. However, on December 23, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California issued an order enjoining DOL from implementing the 2020 AEWR Final Rule and ordering DOL to set the hourly


AEWRs using the methodology set forth in the Temporary Agricultural Employment of H-2A Aliens in the United States, 75 FR 6884 (Feb. 12, 2010) (2010 H-2A Final Rule). See Order Granting Plaintiffs’ Motion for a Preliminary Injunction, United Farm Workers, et al. v. U.S. Dep’t of Labor, et al., No. 20-cv-1690 (E.D. Cal.), ECF No. 37. Pursuant to that order, DOL has used the methodology set forth in the 2010 H-2A Final Rule to determine the 2022 AEWRs.
Accordingly, the 2022 AEWRs for all agricultural employment (except for the herding or production of livestock on the range, which is covered by 20 CFR 655.200 through 655.235) for which temporary H-2A certification is being sought is equal to the annual weighted average hourly wage rate for field and livestock workers (combined) in the state or region as published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in the November 24, 2021 Farm Labor Report. The 2010 H-2A Final Rule, 20 CFR 655.120(c), requires that the Administrator of the Office of Foreign Labor Certification publish the USDA field and livestock worker (combined) wage data as AEWRs in a Federal Register Notice. Accordingly, the 2022 AEWRs to be paid for agricultural work performed by H-2A and workers in corresponding employment on and after the effective date of this notice are set forth in the table below:
TABLE—2022 ADVERSE EFFECT WAGE RATES

State 2022 AEWRs

Alabama                            $11.99
Arizona                              $14.79
Arkansas                           $12.45
California                           $17.51
Colorado                           $15.58
Connecticut                        $15.66
Delaware                            $15.54
Florida                               $12.41
Georgia                             $11.99
Hawaii                                $16.54
Idaho                                 $14.68
Illinois                                $15.89
Indiana                               $15.89
Iowa                                  $16.19
Kansas                              $16.47
Kentucky                           $13.89
Louisiana                           $12.45
Maine                                $15.66
Maryland                            $15.54
Massachusetts                   $15.66
Michigan                            $15.37
Minnesota                          $15.37
Mississippi                        $12.45
Missouri                             $16.19
Montana                            $14.68
Nebraska                           $16.47
Nevada                              $15.58
New Hampshire                  $15.66
New Jersey                        $15.54
New Mexico                       $14.79
New York                           $15.66
North Carolina                    $14.16
North Dakota                     $16.47
Ohio                                  $15.89
Oklahoma                          $13.88
Oregon                              $17.41
Pennsylvania                      $15.54
Rhode Island                      $15.66
South Carolina                   $11.99
South Dakota                     $16.47
Tennessee                         $13.89
Texas                                $13.88
Utah                                  $15.58
Vermont                             $15.66
Virginia                              $14.16
Washington                        $17.41
West Virginia                      $13.89
Wisconsin                          $15.37
Wyoming                           $14.68

AUTHORITY: 20 CFR 655.120(c).
Angela Hanks,
Acting Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training, Labor.
[FR Doc. 2021-27119 Filed: 12/14/2021 8:45 am; Publication Date: 12/15/2021]

https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/12/15/2021-27119/labor-certification-process-for-the-temporary-employment-of-foreign-workers-in-agriculture-in-the

USDA Launches Loan Guarantee Program to Create More Market Opportunities, Promote Competition and Strengthen America’s Food Supply Chain

Program Will Unlock Approximately $1 Billion for Meat and Poultry Processors and Food Supply Chain Infrastructure

Release & Contact Info
Press Release
Release No. 0268.21
Contact: USDA Press
Email: press@usda.gov

WASHINGTON, Dec. 9, 2021 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced USDA is deploying $100 million under the new Food Supply Chain Guaranteed Loan Program to make available nearly $1 billion in loan guarantees; these loan guarantees will back private investment in processing and food supply infrastructure that will strengthen the food supply chain for the American people.

USDA is making the funding available through the American Rescue Plan Act. The program is part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s efforts to address food system challenges dating back decades and further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. These investments will help essential processing and supply chain infrastructure that will ultimately deliver more opportunities and fairer prices for farmers, they will give people greater access to healthier foods, and they will help eliminate bottlenecks in the food supply chain.

“The pandemic exposed vulnerabilities and created extreme disruptions in America’s food supply chain. The reduction in meat processing capacity is just one example of the supply chain bottlenecks that affect small and midsize farmers,” Vilsack said. “Under the leadership of President Biden and Vice President Harris, USDA is investing in ways to improve America’s food supply chain. The funding we’re announcing today will leverage approximately a billion dollars in public and private-sector investments that will significantly expand meat and poultry processing capacity and finance critical food supply chain infrastructure.”

Food Supply Chain Guaranteed Loan Program
Through the Food Supply Chain Guaranteed Loan Program, USDA will partner with lenders to guarantee loans of up to $40 million to help eligible entities expand meat and poultry processing capacity and finance other food supply chain infrastructure. Lenders may provide the loans to eligible cooperatives, corporations, for profits, nonprofits, Tribal communities, public bodies and people in rural and urban areas.
USDA Rural Development (RD) will administer the loans. Funding may be used to:

  • start-up or expand food supply chain activities such as aggregating, processing, manufacturing, storing, transporting, wholesaling or distributing food.
  • address supply chain bottlenecks.
  • increase capacity and help create a more resilient, diverse and secure U.S. food supply chain.

USDA is accepting electronic applications from lenders through the Food Supply Chain Online Application System until funds are expended. Paper applications will not be accepted. To access the online application system, lenders must submit a request to rdfoodsupplychainloans@usda.gov. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov/foodsupplychainloans or see the notice published in the Dec. 9 Federal Register.

USDA Rural Development encourages applications for projects that advance the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, promote equitable access to USDA programs and services, and reduce the impacts of climate change on rural communities. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov/priority-points.

Background
This funding announcement follows the Biden-Harris Administration’s September announcement about the steps it is taking to address concentration in the meat-processing industry. It adds a new commitment of $100 million for guaranteed loans on top of the previously announced $500 million investment to expand meat and poultry processing capacity.

These efforts are part of USDA’s Build Back Better Initiative, a comprehensive plan to invest $4 billion to strengthen the resiliency of America’s food supply chain while promoting competition.

As co-Chair of the Biden-Harris Administration’s Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force, Secretary Vilsack and USDA have brought together industry, labor and federal partners to address the short-term supply chain disruptions arising from the Administration’s strong economic recovery. This is one of several key steps that USDA is taking to build a more resilient supply chain and better food system and to increase competition in agricultural markets. These steps are pursuant to President Biden’s Executive Order on Promoting Competition in the American Economy and his Executive Order on America’s Supply Chains. This initiative will support key supply chain infrastructure investments to expand and scale existing capacity, as well as support long-term investments in new operations.

Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov. If you’d like to subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates, visit our GovDelivery subscriber page
.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, promoting competition and fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.

https://www.usda.gov/media/press-releases/2021/12/09/usda-launches-loan-guarantee-program-create-more-market

EPA Sued Over Systemic Pesticide Exemption Harming Honeybees

EPA Sued Over Systemic Pesticide Exemption Harming Honeybees
by Kendall Heebink
December 16, 2021

A suit was filed on Tuesday in the Northern District of California by the Center for Food Safety and the Pesticide Action Network North America against defendants United States Environmental Protect Agency (EPA) and Michael Regan (Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency).

The complaint for declaratory and equitable relief alleges that despite being required by law to do so, the defendants failed to answer a 2017 petition for the EPA to “close a regulatory loophole that allows seeds coated with systemic pesticides to evade the registration and labeling requirements of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act.” If the loophole remains open, the plaintiffs state that there will be irreparable environmental harm.

Coated seeds are intended to “have an external pesticidal effects on pests and predators of the growing plant.” Despite them being used widely across the United States, their widespread environmental impacts include injuring or even killing birds and insects, as well as contaminating the surrounding air, soil, vegetation, and waterways. Most notably, the coated seeds have detrimental impacts on the honey bee population. The complaint notes that “excessive honey bee mortality and related wild pollinator declines are a major crisis for American agriculture.”

Coated seeds are currently exempt by the EPA from premarket licensing, registration, assessment, and labeling since they fall under the agency’s treated article exemption. The EPA exemption argues that the systemic pesticides coating the seeds are exempt because they are protecting the seed. The plaintiffs argue that they should not be exempt as they do not protect the seed, but rather the growing plant. The current exemption allows the pesticides to remain unregulated.

The plaintiffs assert that the EPA “has for decades intentionally evaded any judicial review by failing to issue any final agency action on the topic.” Previous litigation has been common with the EPA regarding their coated seeds regulations and the corresponding impact on bees and other pollinators.

The complaint cites a violation of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), leading the plaintiffs to seek favorable judgement on the APA count, an order requiring the EPA to respond to the petition within 90 days, litigation fees, and any other relief deemed proper by the Court.The plaintiffs are represented by counsel from the Center for Food Safety.

https://lawstreetmedia.com/news/agriculture/epa-sued-over-systemic-pesticide-exemption-harming-honeybees/

Anti-Dumping Lawsuit Update

One of the biggest updates from ABF at the Annual Conference was an update on the extensive efforts being made to take on fraudulent honey in the market. The American Honey Producers Association along with Sioux Honey Association filed a petition through the International Trade Commission. (ITC)

Through this pursuit, U.S. Beekeepers are taking on foreign countries who are knowingly, or unknowingly importing fraudulent honey into the U.S. market. The term “dumping” refers to goods sold below cost that negatively impact the market value of our domestic commodity.

Based on the most recent decision in December, the ITC will continue to investigate the injury inflicted on the U.S. raw honey producers by low-priced imports, and the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) will investigate the extent to which imports from the five countries are being sold below fair value in the U.S. market.

 

Import Statistics:

Additional resources:

Letters & Updates from AHPA & ABF:

We Still Need Your Support!

On April 21, 2021, the American Honey Producers Association (AHPA) and Sioux Honey Association (SHA) filed petitions with the ITC and DOC for relief from dumped imports of raw honey from Argentina, Brazil, India, Ukraine, and Vietnam.  The American Beekeeping Federation (ABF) also supports the trade cases.

On May 18, 2021, the DOC published a notice initiating the investigations in the Federal Register, with estimated dumping margins of 9.75 to 49.44 percent for Argentina, 83.72 percent for Brazil, 27.02 to 88.48 percent for India, 9.49 to 92.94 percent for Ukraine, and 47.56 to 138.23 percent for Vietnam.

DOC is scheduled to issue preliminary determinations of dumping in mid-November, at which point preliminary duties will go into effect, and importers will be obligated to begin paying cash deposits at the time of importation.

On June 4, 2021 the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) unanimously determined that there is a reasonable indication that unfairly traded imports of raw honey from Argentina, Brazil, India, Ukraine, and Vietnam are injuring the U.S. industry producing raw honey.

Today’s unanimous decision means that the ITC will continue to investigate the injury inflicted on the U.S. raw honey producers by low-priced imports, and the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) will investigate the extent to which imports from the five countries are being sold below fair value in the U.S. market.

We truly appreciate all of the donations that we have received to cover legal fees.

The good fight isn’t over yet, and we still need your support.

To donate to the Antidumping Fund, please contact
Cassie Cox: cassie@ahpanet.com
281-900-9740

Or donate on our secure website: https://www.ahpanet.com/donations-1

From the American Beekeeping Federation

We need your help! We have an urgent need to fight against unfair honey prices for our domestic honey producers.

The International Trade Commission has ruled that U.S. Honey Producers have been injured by low imported honey prices (an estimated 381 million pounds of honey valued at $300 million was imported in 2020 alone). Adding insult to injury, these honey imports are often adulterated with “extenders” that affect the quality of the product which negatively reflects on those of us who take pride in our pure U.S. honey.

We at the American Beekeeping Federation (ABF) recognize the urgent need to get behind the anti-dumping lawsuit, and we are asking for your financial support!

Would you consider a donation in one of the following amounts?

• $.05/pound of your 2020 production – suggested for commercial beekeepers
• $.12/pound of your production if you averaged over $4.00 per pound – suggested for serious sideliner beekeepers
• $300 which is equivalent to the cost of setting up one hive – suggested for small-scale/hobbyist beekeepers
• Or a donation of your choosing: no gift is too large or too small!

To win this lawsuit, we need to make a strong, distinctive statement. Our message is that We will NOT stand for our market to be adversely impacted by cheap or adulterated honey. We are a small community doing a big job. We all need to do the RIGHT thing to:

• protect the integrity of honey
• establish fair market trade
• get a fair price for U.S. Honey
• educate the public to “know where your honey comes from”

You can donate online to the Honey Defense Fund at: http://bit.ly/HoneyDefenseFund.

Thank you for your continued support of the ABF and the industry it represents.

P.S. Successful Cases Tend to increase Market Prices by Eliminating Unfair Trade. After the domestic industry filed and won an Anti-dumping and Countervailing Duties case against honey imports from China and Argentina in 2000-2001, domestic raw honey prices for white honey steadily increased from
$0.56/pound to $1.40/pound by 2003. While it is not possible to predict the exact price impact of the case, there is every reason to believe that the new case should have a similar positive impact on domestic raw honey prices. Please donate today to support the anti-dumping/fair trade lawsuit!

Texas Beekeeping 101 Website now available

College Station, Texas – December 30, 2021 – Funded by a Southern Sustainable Agriculture  Research and Education (SARE) Professional Development Program grant, AgriLogic  Consulting, LLC in cooperation with Texas Beekeepers Association (TBA), the Texas Apiary  Inspection Service (TAIS), Texas AgriLife Extension Service (TAES) and several Master  Beekeepers have compiled this website resource in an attempt to transfer the wealth of  knowledge and wisdom that currently exists within the beekeeping community itself, into a  basic understanding and education of apiculture to beginning beekeepers of all ages and those  who may wish to lead and guide them. 

The website and its content is intended to be used by both the educators as well as those  seeking to learn. The target audiences for this grant project were (1) agricultural extension  agents serving the 254 Texas counties; (2) 4-H extension agents/FFA sponsors wishing to offer  beekeeping contests, clinics or competition options to their youth; and (3) existing beekeepers  wishing to serve as mentors to youth and new beekeepers. 

We hope that you will find the site to be fun, easy to navigate, useful and most of all  informative as you begin your beekeeping journey or help someone else begin theirs! The  website is available free of charge and can be accessed at www.texasbeekeeping101.com. All  county offices, clubs, etc. are welcome to include a link to this website on their existing  websites as deemed applicable.  

Please direct all questions about this resource or the project to ngueck@agrilogic.com and  learn more about AgriLogic’s current and past projects at www.agrilogicconsulting.com.