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Revisions to U.S. Grade Standards for Various Processed Vegetables Adopted

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service is revising the U.S. standards for grades of canned lima beans, canned mushrooms, pickles and green olives by (i) replacing the term “midget” with “petite” in the canned lima bean, canned mushroom and pickle standards, and (ii) removing “midget” from the green olive standards. Grade standards are used as a common language among traders and serve as a means of measuring value in the marketing of agricultural products.

The first change is in response to a petition from the Little People of America aimed at eliminating the use of the word midget, which is nowadays considered a derogatory slur. AMS is also replacing the two-term grading system with a single term to describe each quality level in the canned lima bean, canned mushroom and green olive standards. The terms “U.S. Fancy,” “U.S. Extra Standard,” “U.S. Choice” and “U.S. Standard” will be removed and the terms “U.S. Grade A,” “U.S. Grade B” and “U.S. Grade C” will be used exclusively.

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