USDA APHIS Announces Continuation of Biotechnology Process Improvement

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July 13, 2017

Dear BRS Stakeholder,

In line with Secretary Perdue’s vision of prioritizing customer service every day, improving operational efficiency and effectiveness, and data-driven decision making, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Biotechnology Regulatory Services (BRS) announces that effective today, July 13, 2017, for annual and final volunteer monitoring reports submitted via email or mail, APHIS BRS staff will enter them into its electronic ePermits system on behalf of regulated organizations that submit them.

This process improvement ensures volunteer monitoring information is managed more effectively, resulting in enhanced oversight of regulated field trials. APHIS started this process improvement in July 2016 with planting reports, continued it in March 2017 with field test reports, and is now extending it to volunteer monitoring reports. These improvements are in support of a recommendation in a September 2015 Office of Inspector General (OIG) Audit Report.

APHIS prefers and strongly encourages the regulated community to submit all reports and notices electronically via the link in ePermits under “My Reports and Notices.” Easy to use Instructions are available for new users.

We understand there may be times when using email or mail is necessary. APHIS BRS developed guidance to assist with submission of annual and final volunteer monitoring reports via email/mail. If using email/mail, you must follow the APHIS BRS guidance.

For more information or questions please contact BRS at 301-851-3935 or via email at BRSCompliance.