The USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is lowering the assessment rate in parts of Idaho and Oregon.

Beginning Aug. 1, the rate will be lowered from $0.0025 to $0.002 per hundredweight of potatoes handled. The lowered assessment rate was recommended by the Idaho-Eastern Oregon Potato Committee, which oversees the marketing order regulations for handling potatoes grown in certain counties in Idaho and Malheur County, OR. The assessment rate is used to fund expenses of the marketing program.

The assessment rate decrease was deemed necessary to comply with the marketing order’s requirement that the committee have funds in reserve that are less than one fiscal period’s budgeted expenses. The reduced rate will stay in effect until it is determined that a change is needed.

The assessment funds the administrative, travel, office and contingency expenses needed to comply with the marketing order. The overall value of the assessment is determined by dividing anticipated expenses by the estimated amount of potatoes shipped from the area.