Final USDA BioPreferred Rule Announced

The move to enhance use of bio-based products in government procurement cleared another hurdle.

Published on: Apr 11, 2012

Increasing the use of bio-based, renewable products across government is no easy task. The complex rules of procurement require approvals, clearances and public comment as federal buyers change how they acquire products. This week, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the addition of 13 biobased product categories that are eligible for Federal procurement preference.

This move adds more than 1,500 more biobased products that will be offered for preferred purchasing consideration by all Federal government agencies and contractors. The final rule was published in the April 4 Federal Register.

READ THE LABEL: Product makers can apply to have the BioPreferred tag added to product packaging.
READ THE LABEL: Product makers can apply to have the BioPreferred tag added to product packaging.

"There are now more than 10,000 products qualifying for preferred procurement under USDA's BioPreferred program" said Vilsack. "Including previously designated items, these 13 additional biobased product categories will help feed the President's initiative by offering even more products with federal procurement preference." USDA is spearheading the effort.

The final rule designates the following biobased products for preferred procurement:

  • air fresheners and deodorizers
  • asphalt and tar removers
  • asphalt restorers
  • blast media
  • candles and wax melts
  • electronic components cleaners
  • floor coverings (non-carpet)
  • foot care products
  • furniture cleaners and protectors
  • inks
  • packaging and insulating materials
  • pneumatic equipment lubricants
  • wood and concrete stains

Biobased products are composed wholly or significantly of biological ingredients in new or emerging markets– renewable plant, animal, marine or forestry materials. A BioPreferred designated item is one that meets or exceeds USDA-established minimum biobased content requirements.

For more information, visit www.biopreferred.gov online, a special USDA site devoted to the issue.