The Administrative Committee for Pistachios (ACP) was established in 2004 by pistachio growers to regulate quality aspects of domestically shipped pistachios, primarily testing for levels of aflatoxin which can occur in tree nuts, peanuts, corn and other commodities. The pistachio marketing order is purposefully limited in its range of activities. It is authorized to require inspection of domestically shipped pistachios for aflatoxin levels, gather statistics from handlers and report this data, fund research projects that pertain to the processing and handling of pistachios, and to establish food safety regulations (although none have yet been established by the ACP). The pistachio marketing order does not perform marketing activities (advertising and consumer education), and does not sell or arrange the purchase of pistachios.
The Administrative Committee for Pistachios (ACP) locally administers the federal marketing order for pistachios produced in California, Arizona, and New Mexico (see By-Laws). This production area is divided into four districts. District One is composed of Kern, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Tulare Counties, District Two of Fresno, Kings, Madera, and Merced Counties, District Three of all remaining California Counties, and District Four of Arizona and New Mexico.
The ACP is composed of twelve members who are elected for two year terms with a maximum of four consecutive terms. Nine of the members are grower-elected, four and three respectively from Districts One and Two and one each from Districts Three and Four. There are also two handler members elected by the handlers; one handler member is elected based on votes adjusted for volume processed and the other where each handler has one vote. There is also a public member who is selected by the ACP but cannot have financial interests in pistachio production or handling. Each member also has an alternate who assumes the member's position in the absence of the member. This is important because, while routine business requires a majority vote of those present at a valid meeting, some actions including changes in inspection regulations and new programs require unanimous consent of all twelve members or alternates in the place of absent members.
Federal marketing orders are required to write annual reports, an annual marketing policy statement, and have a diversity plan. For many marketing orders, the marketing policy serves as the basis for marketing programs and promotion. Since the ACP does not market or promote pistachios, our marketing policy is a simple and brief review of the global pistachio market and does not serve as the basis of other activities. The ACP budget is based on assessments collected from pistachio processors and is passed annually at an ACP meeting, generally held in July when new ACP members are seated and a new Chairman and Vice Chairman are elected by the ACP members. Additional ACP meetings are held on an as-needed basis.
The ACP also has two subcommittees, the Executive and Diversity Subcommittee and the Technical Subcommittee. Members of the subcommittees are appointed by the ACP Chairman. Historically, the Technical Subcommittee has been composed of one representative from each of the major processors and one representative for the smaller processors. As its name suggests, the Technical Subcommittee addresses technical issues of concern to pistachio handlers and makes recommendations to the ACP regarding new rules and changes to existing rules.