Quality / Standards and Regulations

The United States Department of Agriculture establishes grade standards and provides inspection services for many fresh fruits and vegetables. Grading is not required by federal regulations unless the commodity is controlled by a marketing order. At this time, no fresh fruit or vegetable grown in Indiana is governed by a marketing order.

Even though not mandated by the government, produce buyers often require sellers to grade produce according to USDA standards. The grade standards are available free on-line at www.ams.usda.gov, or copies of standards may be requested from:

Alexia Hurdakis – USDA, AMS, F&V Programs
Fresh Products Branch Equipment and Forms Depot
831 Mitten Road, Room 203
Burlingame, CA 94010

Phone: (650) 552-9073

For commodities covered on this web site, links to the standards are provided below. (Acrobat Reader software is required to view the documents.)

Vegetables

Beans
Beans for Processing
Cabbage
Cabbage for Processing
Cucumbers
Cucumbers, Greenhouse
Muskmelon
Peppers, Bell
Pumpkins
Sweet Corn
Sweet Corn for Processing
Tomatoes
Tomatoes, Greenhouse
Tomatoes for Processing
Watermelon
Zucchini 

Fruits

Apples
Apples for Processing
Blueberries
Blueberries for Processing
Grapes, Table
Grapes, Bunch
Grapes, Juice
Grapes for Processing and Freezing (American, bunch)
Grapes for Processing and Freezing
Strawberries
Strawberries for Processing

In Indiana, inspections of produce for compliance with USDA grade standards may be requested by contacting the address below. A fee is charged for inspections.

USDA, AMS, Fruit and Vegetable Programs
Fresh Products Branch
7202 N. Shadeland Avenue, Suite 121
Indianapolis, Indiana 46250

Gary Peterson, In-Charge

PH: 317-570-0479
FAX: 317-570-0482

Hours: 6:30 AM - 3:00 PM

Inspection offices for other states are listed on-line at http://www.ams.usda.gov.

Content author: E. Maynard, 2002. Content last modified: March 2011.