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Program Status and Outlook. Jeff Goodman Environmental Management Division U.S. Department of Agriculture August 2012. Topics Addressed. BioPreferred program overview Review of Federal procurement preference program

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Program Status and Outlook

Jeff Goodman

Environmental Management Division

U.S. Department of Agriculture

August 2012

topics addressed
Topics Addressed
  • BioPreferred program overview
  • Review of Federal procurement preference program
  • Increasing Federal acquisition of biobased products under Presidential Memorandum
  • Labeling program status and outlook
  • What’s Next
biopreferred program overview
BioPreferred Program Overview
  • Established by 2002 Farm Bill
  • Identifies and seeks new markets for biobased products
  • Two major program elements:
    • Federal procurement preference
    • Voluntary labeling
procurement preference program
Procurement Preference Program
  • USDA identifies anddesignates productcategories (with minimumbiobased contents) by rule
  • Federal agencies must showbiobased products indesignated categories aprocurement preference oneyear after rule is final1
  • Requirement applies to Federal agencies and contractors
  • 1Exceptions apply
procurement preference status
Procurement Preference Status
  • To date, USDA has promulgated eight designation rules and has proposed a ninth rule
  • Currently, 77 product categories designated
  • About 10,000 products represented
  • USDA will continue designations (Round 9 rule will add 12 categories)
presidential memorandum overview
Presidential Memorandum Overview
  • “Driving Innovation and Creating Jobs in Rural America through Biobased and Sustainable Product Procurement”
  • Overall objective is“…to promote rural economic development, create new jobs, and provide new markets for farm commodities.”
  • Signed February 21, 2012

To ensure that Federal agencies effectively execute Federal procurement requirements for biobased products, including those requirements identified in Executive Order 13514 and prescribed in the 2002 Farm Bill, as amended by the 2008 Farm Bill.

presidential memo fits into white house blueprint for the bioeconomy
Presidential Memo Fits into White House Blueprint for the Bioeconomy
  • White House initiative to promote the bioeconomy
  • Focus on bioeconomy because of its tremendous potential for American innovation, growth, job creation, and other societal benefits
  • Announced April 26, 2012
presidential memo sections
Presidential Memo Sections
  • 1: Actions Related to E.O. 13514
  • 2: Biobased Product Designations
  • 3: Changes in Procurement Mechanisms
  • 4: Small Business Assistance
  • 5: Reporting
  • 6: Job Creation Research
  • 7: Education and Outreach
  • 8: General Provisions and Publication in Fed. Reg.
1 actions related to e o 13514
1: Actions Related to E.O. 13514
  • Agencies to include and report on biobased acquisition as part of Strategic Sustainability Performance Plans (SSPPs)
  • Agencies to ensure 95% sustainable acquisition of biobased products through
    • Affirmative procurement programs
    • Procurement review and monitoring under the 2008 Farm Bill
    • Training
  • OMB to emphasize biobased purchasing in sustainability scorecards
e o actions sspps
E.O. Actions: SSPPs
  • Agencies submitted Strategic Sustainability Performance Plans (SSPPs) to OMB/CEQ on June 29th
  • SSPPs include results of sustainable acquisition surveys including biobased acquisition
  • SSPPs should include 2012 scorecard requirements
  • USDA will be working with OMB in reviewing SSPPs to evaluate conformance to Presidential Memo/scorecard requirements
2 biobased product designations
2: Biobased Product Designations
  • USDA to increase number of designated categories of biobased products for preferred Federal procurement by 50% in one year
    • Given 64 categories designated at time of memo, goal is to add 32
    • Will occur by February 2013 via three regulations
  • USDA to establish web-based process for biobased product manufacturers to suggest categories
designation status and outlook
Designation Status and Outlook
  • 13 product categories added in Round 8 rule promulgated April 2012
  • 12 additional product categories proposed in Round 9 rule in June 2012
  • Designation schedule
3 changes in procurement mechanisms
3: Changes in Procurement Mechanisms
  • Senior Sustainability Officers and Chief Acquisition Officers to sample solicitations and awards and include results in scorecards
  • Agencies who have electronic catalogs to increase visibility of biobased products in those catalogs
  • Senior Sustainability Officers of all agencies with product specifications to review and revise them to remove prohibitory language on a four-year cycle
  • USDA to amend its contract writing system as a model for biobased product procurement
electronic catalog activity
Electronic Catalog Activity
  • GSA Advantage
    • USDA performed cost comparisons of biobased vs. non-biobased products
    • USDA finishing paper documenting instances where biobased products are “buried”
    • Next step: meet with GSA management
  • DOD Emall
    • Access issues made for slower start
    • Will follow same approach as GSA
specifications review
Specifications Review
  • Big player is Defense Logistics Agency (DLA)
  • USDA has met with DLA to discussPresidential Memo requirements
  • Discussion of 2013 specification-related scorecard requirementsincluded in June on-line trainingattended by DLA staff
  • Expect scorecard requirement to serve as major incentive to act
4 small business assistance
4: Small Business Assistance
  • Department of Commerce to use Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) and other mechanisms to make biobased manufacturers more competitive
  • USDA to work with Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs) to assist biobased product companies
  • USDA to develop and SBA to disseminate small business-specific training materials
small business assistance
Small Business Assistance
  • USDA met with Small Business Administration representatives in April to discuss ways two agencies can work together
  • BioPreferred staff met with PTAC Association to discuss Presidential Memo
  • BioPreferred staff spoke in May at Manufacturing Extension Partnership National Conference
  • Within USDA, BioPreferred staff working with Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization
cultivating opportunities in the biobased marketplace
Cultivating Opportunitiesin the Biobased Marketplace
  • Free, on-line seminar August 14th,1:30 − 2:30 pm
  • Live via streaming video or satellitedownlink, including information on:
    • Biobased product opportunities andgrowth industries
    • Introduction to BioPreferred Program
    • How Federal procurement preference stimulates demand
    • Resources available from SBA, PTACs, and MEP
  • Go to to register
sections 5 and 6
Sections 5 and 6
  • 5: Reporting
    • Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council to publish FAR rule requiring reporting of biobased product purchases
    • USDA, in consultation with Chief Acquisition Officers Council, to create reporting template to assist agencies in meeting reporting requirements
  • 6: Jobs Creation Research ― USDA to do study
reporting template
Reporting Template
  • Selected members of an existing Chief Acquisition Officers Council workgroup are developing template and approach
  • USDA developing a draft reporting template
  • Process will likely involve contractorreporting by Federal agency withUSDA as central point of datacollection
  • Interim spreadsheet solution until incorporation into GSA Integrated Acquisition Environment
7 education and outreach
7: Education and Outreach
  • USDA to update existing BioPreferred training
  • Senior Sustainability Officers and Chief Acquisition Officers to work with USDA to implement training
  • USDA to collaborate with AbilityOne to promote the increased purchase of biobased AbilityOne products
education outreach actions
Education/Outreach Actions
  • USDA updated all classroom trainingand posted it on website
  • We held a live one-hour training session on the Presidential Memo in June attended by over 1,000
  • USDA and AbilityOne staff worked together at GSA Expo in May to promote the use and purchase of biobased products
  • Currently updating contract templates for posting on website
voluntary labeling program goals
Voluntary Labeling Program Goals
  • Expand purchases of biobased products in commercial and retail markets
  • Increase availability of information to consumers
  • Help manufacturers market biobased products
usda certified biobased product label
“USDA Certified Biobased Product” Label
  • Launched February 2011
  • Serves as an unbiasedindicator of biobased content
  • On-line paperless applicationprocess
  • Minimum biobased content
    • Same as designated category for products associated with a category
    • 25% for all others
  • Independent third party certification partnership with ASTM International
what s on the label
What’s on the Label?
  • “Sun, sea, and soil” motif
  • Product or package
  • Biobased content percentage listed
  • “FP” (“Federally Preferred”): associated with a designated product category and included in Federal procurement preference program
usda certified biobased products
USDA Certified Biobased Products



(As of June 2012)

auditing overview
Auditing: Overview
  • Objective is to ensure program integrity
    • Monitors validity of participants’ biobased content claims for designated products
    • Safeguards proper usage of label in marketplace
  • Aimed at products in BioPreferred catalog
  • Three stage process for all products that program recognizes
auditing status
Auditing: Status
  • Stage 1 – Declaration of Conformance form submittal (2012)
    • 25% of products in catalog will be removed this fall
    • 80% of companies audited are using the label/certification mark correctly
      • Mostly minor label use violations; some major
      • Corrective follow-up in place
auditing what s next
Auditing: What’s Next
  • Stage 2 – USDA testing of a sampling of participants’ products (2013/ 2014)
  • Stage 31 – Participant retesting of all certified/labeled products at frequency to be determined (2016)

1Stage 3 implementation will require revision of labeling rule.

program guidelines status
Program Guidelines: Status
  • USDA proposed changes to BioPreferred Program Guidelines on May 1, 2012 including
    • Designating intermediate materials and feedstocks and downstream finished products
    • Designating complex assembly products
    • Limiting program to “new and emerging markets for biobased materials”
  • 60-day comment period closed end of June
  • Currently evaluating comments received from 19 organizations or individuals
program guidelines what s next
Program Guidelines: What’s Next?
  • Will complete analysis of comments, develop regulatory options, and decide on positions for final rule
  • Promulgation of revised Program Guidelines scheduled for January 2013
  • Passage of new Farm Bill could send us “back to the drawing board” vis-à-vis inclusion of mature market products legislatively
awards program
Awards Program
  • New awards program will recognizeoutstanding achievements by USDAemployees in advancing BioPreferredprogram objectives
  • Nominations received by end of July
  • Awards in October
  • FY 2012 pilot program limited to USDA
  • Pilot to serve as model for a government-wide awards program in future
  • Jeff Goodman, Chief, Environmental Management Division,, 202-401-4747
  • Ron Buckhalt, BioPreferred Program Manager,, 202-205-4008
  • Web site:
  • Twitter: @BioPreferred