Challenges to organic soybean meal supply

April 22, 2021

USDA National Organic Program (NOP) certification and a lawsuit by the Organic Soybean Processors of America may disrupt the organic soybean meal supply. Organic soybean meal is a critical nutrition component for all organic animal feeds, with no alternative available. An estimated 60% of the organic soybean meal utilized in the United States is imported from India. Issues impacting organic soybean meal from India to the United States have the potential to affect many organic production animal producers in the United States.

First, USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) and its Indian equivalent have taken a series of actions that resulted in many Indian organic soybean producers requiring new certifiers.

  • By July 12, 2021, current organic operations in India will need to have applied for certification with a USDA-accredited organic certifier.
  • After July 12, 2022, USDA organic certification by a USDA accredited certifier will be required to import products from India to the United States.

NOP recently held a webinar on this topic and a link to the webinar slides and additional details are available on the USDA International Trade Policies webpage for India.

The second development is a case filed with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) and the U.S. Department of Commerce by the Organic Soybean Processors of America and others.

  • On April 8, the ITC published a Federal Register notice with information about anti-dumping and countervailing duty cases filed against organic soybean meal from India.
    • “Dumping” occurs if an import is sold in the United States at a price less than its value in the country where it was produced, or less than its cost of production.
    • “Countervailing duties” are imposed on products imported into the United States that benefit from a foreign subsidy.
    • Anti-dumping duties (AD) and countervailing duties (CVD) are calculated to offset the value of the dumping or subsidy, respectively.
  • For AD and/or CVD duties to be imposed, the petitioners (i.e., the domestic industry) must show two things:
    • First, that dumping, or subsidy, is actually occurring – this is decided by Commerce; and
    • Second, the domestic industry is being injured (or threatened with injury) by the dumped or subsidized imports – this is decided by the ITC.

Additional details can be found on the ITC website.