Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has published in the Federal Register a notice regarding the implementation of a revised tiering methodology for chemical facilities of interest regulated under the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS).

The notice temporarily suspends the requirement to submit Top-Screens and Security Vulnerability Assessments (SVA) in order to allow for a phased roll out of the new Chemical Security Assessment Tool (CSAT) 2.0.  CSAT 2.0 consists of a more streamlined CSAT Top-Screen, SVA, and a Site Security Plan, that will allow the collection of the data necessary to process facilities through the new methodology and improve the integration between the SVA application and the SSP application.

To minimize confusion, DHS is taking a multi-step approach to this implementation. First, the Department is temporarily suspending the Top-Screen and SVA submissions requirements as outlined in the notice. Second, DHS will replace the current CSAT surveys with the revised surveys. Lastly, DHS will reinstate the Top-Screen and SVA submission requirement. DHS will individually notify facilities of the requirement to resubmit a Top-Screen using the new tool in a phased manner, however, facilities may choose to proactively resubmit a Top-Screen once the new tool is available and prior to the individual notification. Additionally, new chemical facilities of interest that come into reportable amounts of COI after reinstatement of the requirement to submit a Top-Screen and SVA must submit within 60 days.

For more information, please click here. Please contact Gary or Ryan if you have any questions.

GMO Soybeans: EU Authorization BUT RR2Xtend lacking key Approval

On July 22 the European Commission announced it had granted import approval for three genetically modified soy traits – Monsanto and Dupont Pioneer’s RR2 Xtend (dicamba x glyphosate MON87708 x MON89788), Monsanto’s Vistive Gold (high oleic x glyphosate MON87705 x MON89788) and Bayer CropScience’s Balance GT (glyphosate x HPPD inhibitor FG72).

The approval of these traits follows a letter written by NAEGA and NGFA to Monsanto regarding the responsible commercialization of Monsanto’s RR2 Xtend Soybean trait in the United States before import approval was granted in the European Union (EU). Commercialization of this trait before import approval in the EU and other soy markets threatened to severely disrupt trade with the EU if RR2 Xtend soybeans. The NAEGA/ NGFA  letter included a series of follow up questions to Monsanto. The letter and follow up questions with Monsanto answers can be found here and here.

Because RR2Xtend is likely to present in soybeans from the current 2016 harvest, NAEGA is monitoring and reporting on its global regulatory status  IMPORTANTLY To the best of our knowledge:  the stack RR2Xtend (MON 87708 X MON 89788) lacks sufficient approval to allow for import for food, feed and processing in the Philippines but has achieved such status in other import markets that regulate and accept biotech.  The new Philippine regime for approvals put in place in May has yet to be completed and there is come expectation that the needed approval for the stack will occur in late August 2016. NAEGA does understand that the following countries have approved this event for import: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, China, Colombia, European Union, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, Taiwan, United States, Vietnam and Indonesia.

NAEGA welcomes your comments and questions, especially if you are aware of different information or if there are countries with approval requirements that import soybeans or soybean meal that you are concerned about.

Please contact Gary if you have any questions or comments.

Decree 177 Working Group

Following up on a July meeting, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is leading a newly developed working group to address industry concerns regarding implementation of Chinese Decree 177, which came into effect on July 1. Decree 177 lays out a regulatory framework for import to China of grains for food and feed and strengthens existing food safety laws on imported foods, including implementation of a facility registration process. The newly created working group will develop an advocacy and engagement strategy related to industry interest regarding implementation of Decree 177. Included in the working group are government personnel including the Grain Inspection, Packers, and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA), the Farm Service Agency (FSA), and APHIS, as well as private sector stakeholders including NAEGA, the National Oilseed Processors Association (NOPA), the U.S. Grains Council, U.S. Wheat Associates and the U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC). More information on the activities of the working group will be shared as information becomes available.

Please contact Gary or Ryan with any questions.

  • GAIN Report - China Decree 177 - February 2016
  • USSA Factsheets

    The U.S. Sustainability Alliance, which NAEGA is a member, has successfully completed a series of multi-lingual factsheets highlighting the sustainable practices of U.S. agriculture. The factsheets can be found on the USSA’s website (, and include sustainability stories from field crops, nuts, organics, hardwoods, poultry and seafood. These factsheets are part of a broader strategy to advertise U.S. agricultures sustainability practices to buyers in the European Union and beyond. To access these fact sheets, please click here.

    NAEGA Moving

    NAEGA is pleased to announce that it will be moving to a new office space as of August 30, 2016. NAEGA will be joining the National Grain and Feed Association, which NAEGA currently shares space with in its Washington, D.C. office, in a move to a new office in the Crystal City neighborhood of Arlington, VA. Our new Crystal City office is conveniently located near the Crystal City Metrorail station, next door to the Crowne Plaza Washington National Airport Hotel, adjacent to shops and restaurants and less than a 10-minute drive to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Our new address is below. Please note that NAEGA email addresses and telephone numbers will not change.

    1400 Crystal Drive
    Suite 260
    Arlington, VA 22202

    Please contact Gary or Ryan if you have any questions.

    Korea Facility Registration

    NAEGA is seeking member input on the implementation of the Korean Special Act for Imported Food Safety, which came into effect on February 4 and requires facility registrations by August 4, 2016. The Special Act requires food importers to register facilities with the Korean Ministry of Food & Drug Safety (MFDS).  During meetings in May with NAEGA and USDA FAS the MFDS agreed to reverse its decision on facility registration and only require registration of export elevators. NAEGA finds this an important change that should be more practical than registration of grain facilities all the way upstream to point of production as was previously being considered. Following the May meetings, we have been pursuing official notification from MFDS on the decision.  We have recently learned during a briefing for foreign embassies that MFDS indicated that only the final packaging location is required to be registered.

    As this may not be sufficient guidance, NAEGA is requesting your advice regarding the following:
    What is your understanding of the registration requirements as they are to apply to your company?
    Is the direction provided by MFDS sufficient for:
    Limiting Registration to the export elevator for bulk FOB vessel loadings?
    Defining which facility needs to be registered for container and break bulk shipments?
    Is there a need to seek some exemptions or alternative approaches to meeting the requirements of the special act?

    Please contact Gary and Ryan if you would like to contribute a response. Your responses will be used as background for NAEGA policy development and as such will be held confidential and no company or individual specific information or advice will be shared beyond NAEGA staff.


    IGTC Newsletter

    The newest edition of the IGTC Newsletter is now available! This week’s newsletter includes coverage of IGTC on combustible dust IPPC ISPM and the WTO SPS Committee meeting. A copy of the newsletter can be found on the IGTC intranet at or by clicking here.

    Japan VCS – Proposed

    On July 11 NAEGA President and CEO Gary Martin met with members of the Japanese grain and oilseed industry at the U.S. Grains Council to discuss U.S. corn quality issues. During the meeting the Japanese Feed Trade Association (JFTA), the U.S. Grains Council and Japanese grain and oilseed importing companies presented on corn quality issues effecting shipments to the Japanese market. JFTA and its members have been pleased with the consistent improvement in the quality of U.S. corn. However, lower protein levels and higher moisture levels in U.S. corn remain a concern. Protein level standards and labelling are required by Japanese law, and lower protein experienced in some recent shipments of U.S. corn levels could result in higher prices or compliance issues. In addition, Japanese industry is also concerned about the presence of “blue-eye mold” and foreign materials in corn shipments.

    Since quality reports at load and at FGIS inspection have been different that at delivery, JFTA is keen to develop data useful for comparing the different sampling and analytical methods and explaining the differences. As a result, JFTA, would like to receive additional information on corn shipments including protein and moisture levels and mycotoxin presence.  To harmonize testing measures, JFTA is proposing corn quality assessment project similar to the “2010 Korea-U.S. Corn Quality Assessment Project” in cooperation with NAEGA, Grain Council and FGIS.

    In response to this proposal, NAEGA is seeking member input on conducting a corn quality assessment project similar to the 2010 Korea-U.S. assessment conducted by NAEGA in coordination with FGIS and the Korea Feed Association (KFA). Please contact Gary or Ryan with your input and comments.

    Sanctions and Embargoes

    On July 14 NAEGA Director of Operations Ryan Olson attended, as part of the USAEDC Attache Seminar, a breakout session on sanctions and embargos titled Complicated Partners: Opening New Markets – Iran, Burma, and Cuba. The session featured presentations from FAS personnel from Cuba, Burma and the United Arab Emirates. In addition, Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) and Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) personnel were on hand to answer sanctions and embargo related questions. As sanctions are being liberalized with Burma, Iran and Cuba, some sections of U.S. industry have an opportunity to access these markets for the first time in decades. However, significant barriers still remain and understanding this is vital to engaging in these new markets.


    Since the loosening of sanctions that began in 2012, U.S. businesses can now engage in any form of trade and investment with Burma. However, U.S. persons are prohibited from engaging in any trade or commerce with individuals listed on the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List (SDN List). In addition, U.S. persons may not engage in the trade of jade or derived products and jewelry. While general licenses from OFAC are now available for trade with Burma, and broad import bans no longer exist, domestic constraints still represent a challenge to trade with the country. These include poor rule of law, domestic financing requirements and poor agribusiness infrastructure.


    Since the U.S. and Iran completed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (nuclear deal), some sanctions related to Iran’s economy have been eased. However, sanctions relief under the nuclear deal was in no way meant to improve commercial or U.S. business relations with the Islamic Republic. Sanctions relief under the deal applies only to non-U.S. persons working outside U.S. jurisdictions. However, OFAC continues to offer general licenses for the export to Iran of agricultural commodities. Export of agricultural commodities to Iran, by U.S. or non-U.S. persons, does not trigger sanctions under U.S. law unless the transaction involves certain U.S.-designated persons such as Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) or a designated Iranian bank. In addition, financial transactions to facilitate these exports are allowed, with certain restrictions.


    The U.S. agricultural sector has been able to engage in the export of agricultural commodities to Cuba since the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000. Under current sanctions, the U.S. persons can export agricultural commodities to Cuba that qualify as EAR99. However, financing for these transactions is still restricted. Agricultural transactions may only be paid by cash in advance or by a bank located in a third country as long as it is not organized under U.S. law. Despite its ongoing ability to trade with Cuba, the U.S. agricultural sector has also benefited from recently granted sanctions relief. Most notably, U.S. persons may now travel to Cuba to engage in “certain authorized export transactions” including the export of agricultural goods, and the approval of direct, non-chartered U.S. flights has increased accessibility to Cuban destinations.

    For more information on U.S. sanction and embargo program, please visit the OFAC website, here.

    House Passes GMO Labeling Bill

    On July 14 the U.S House of Representatives passed a Senate bill authorizing the creation of a Federal labelling standard for genetically modified food. The bill will now advance to the President’s desk, where it is likely to be signed. Under the bill, food manufacturers would be able to use text, symbols or a QR code to provide information on the genetic content of the food they produce. The standard would also override any state laws regarding the labelling of genetically modified food. Efforts to pass a federal standard followed moves by Vermont and other states to implement state based labels for genetically modified food.

    For more information on the GMO labelling bill, click here.