Progress and Problems in Implementing the Grain Standards Act of 1976

CED-78-73: Published: Feb 27, 1978. Publicly Released: Feb 27, 1978.

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The Grain Standards Act of 1976 requires the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to revise, improve, and expand the national grain inspection system and to establish a national weighing system. USDA and GAO are required to conduct studies of inspection and weighing procedures and management practices in the interior marketing areas. An interim review of the progress the Federal Grain Inspection Service was making in implementing the 1976 act revealed that the Service was experiencing problems in acquiring and training sufficient personnel, both in Washington and in the field. As of January 1978, the Washington staff of the Service had only 65 percent of projected staffing levels. Expanding the size and capabilities of the Standardization Division staff has been particularly slow. This has slowed progress in carrying out the study of grain standards required by the act. Although the Service is required to report to Congress on the findings of the study and actions taken as a result by November 20, 1978, it was not until the first week in February 1978 that the staff began public meetings to obtain suggestions from grain producers and merchandisers concerning revisions in the grain standards.

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