The National Peanut Board is proud to announce that an Interim Final Rule which states that Mississippi will have a seat on the National Peanut Board starting Jan. 1, 2009 has been published in the Federal Register.

This Amendment to the Peanut Order would add a producer member and alternate from the state of Mississippi, bringing the total number of National Peanut Board seats to 11.

This change is made because Mississippi is now considered a major peanut producing state based on a review and verification of the geographical distribution of the production of peanuts.

The Board voted last year to add Mississippi when it became apparent they met the Order's criteria for production to be considered a major peanut producing state. The Board currently has a member and alternate from nine major peanut producing states and one at-large member representing the minor states.

"We are extremely pleased that Mississippi will be joining us, and we look forward to their active participation in setting the vision and objectives of the National Peanut Research and Promotion Board," said Wes Shannon, 2008 board chairman.

The comment period on the rule is open until April 21. Those interested in commenting may do so by contacting the Department of Agriculture, Room 0632- S, Stop 0244, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20250- 0244; fax: (202) 205-2800.

For questions and information about the amendment, please contact Jeanette Palmer, USDA-AMS Peanut Specialist at toll free 1-888-720-9917 and 202-720-9915; e-mail: Jeanette.Palmer@usda.gov.