Effective August 9, 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has amended the Guidelines for Designating Bio-based Products for Federal Procurement by adding 12 product categories. These include intermediate chemicals within which bio-based products will be afforded Federal procurement preference by Federal agencies and their contractors. These guidelines are part of the USDA’s BioPreferred program.
Provisions in Guidelines
The Guidelines included provisions for the designation of product categories that were composed of finished, consumer products such as mobile equipment hydraulic fluids, penetrating lubricants, or hand cleaners and sanitizers.
The term “intermediate ingredient and feedstock” is defined in the Farm Bill as “a material or compound made in whole or in significant part from biological products, including renewable agricultural materials (including plant, animal, and marine materials) or forestry materials, that are subsequently used to make a more complex compound or product.”
Newly Added 12 Product Categories
In the proposed rule, USDA proposed designating the following 12 product categories for the preferred procurement program:
|Category||Item||Bio-based Minimum Content, %|
|Intermediates||Paint and Coating Components||22%|
|Intermediates||Textile Processing Materials||22%|
|Intermediates||Fibers and Fabrics||25%|
|Intermediates||Personal Care Product Components||62%|
|Intermediates||Oils, Fats, and Waxes||65%|
Feasibility for Manufacturers & Vendors
Once USDA designates a product category, procuring agencies are required generally to purchase bio-based products within the designated product category where the purchase price of the procurement product exceeds 10,000 USD or where the quantity of such products or of functionally equivalent products purchased over the preceding fiscal year equaled 10,000 USD or more.