N: Nitrogen

NACD: National Association of Conservation Districts

NACMCF: National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods

NAD: National Appeals Division

NAD: Also USDA NAD. See National Appeals Division (NAD).

NAFTA: North American Free Trade Agreement

NAFTA Safeguard: Under Section 302 of the North American Free Trade Implementation Act, the International Trade Commission determines whether, as a result of the reduction or elimination in a duty under the NAFTA, increased imports from Canada or Mexico are a substantial cause of serious injury or threat of serious injury to a U.S. industry.

NAHMS: National Animal Health Monitoring System

NAHRS: National Animal Health Reporting System

NAIS: National Animal Identification Program

NAL: National Agricultural Library (USDA)

Named peril(s) insurance: A flexible coverage crop insurance product designed by the insured to protect crops from damaging weather conditions during the coverage period selected. Also Specified peril(s) insurance.

Nanotechnology: The science of studying and producing materials and devices of nanometer size – about the size of a small molecule or individual atom.

NAP: Noninsured (Crop Disaster) Assistance Program

NAPIAP: National Agricultural Pesticide Impact Assessment Program

NARETPA: National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977

NASS: National Agricultural Statistics Service (USDA)

NASULGC: National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges

National Advisory Committee on Meat and Poultry Inspection: Established to provide input to the Secretary of Agriculture on product standards, labeling changes, or on matters affecting federal and state inspection program activities. Other functions include reviewing initiatives, helping develop standard descriptive terminology, and recommending when the regulatory policies need to be reexamined.

National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF): Co-sponsored by the Food Safety and Inspection Service, the Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Marine Fisheries Service, and the Department of Defense Veterinary Service Activity. It provides impartial, scientific advice to federal food safety agencies for use in the development of an integrated national food safety systems approach from farm to final consumption to assure the safety of domestic, imported, and exported foods.

National Advisory Council on Commodity Distribution: A 15-member council that advises the Secretary of Agriculture on the distribution of donated commodities to recipient agencies. It provides guidance on regulations and policy development on specifications. Authority for the Council expired on September 30, 1996.

National Advisory Council on Maternal, Infant and Fetal Nutrition: The USDA advisory council, authorized by the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (Sec. 17), as amended, that is charged with making a continual study of the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program and related programs, such as the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, to determine how these programs may be improved. The Council is composed of 24 members of which 21 are authorized by the Child Nutrition Act of 1966; two additional members are authorized by the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988, and one additional member is authorized by the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 1989. The Council is required to report to the Congress and President every two years.

National Ag Risk Education Library: A major component of the Risk Management Education Initiative. Its intent is to help both producers and agricultural professionals quickly locate information, tools, and assistance relevant to specific risk management topics. See Risk management education.

National Agricultural Library (NAL): Established in 1862 as part of the USDA with the mission to “acquire and diffuse among the people of the U.S. useful information on subjects connected with agriculture…and to procure and preserve all information concerning agriculture.” The NAL, located in Beltsville, Maryland, with a collection of 3.5 million items on 48 miles of shelving and on-line access to over three million citations through the AGRICOLA system, is the largest agricultural library in the world, and one of four national libraries of the U.S.

National Agricultural Pesticide Impact Assessment Program (NAPIAP): program to provide management and coordination for USDA and state activity to support informed regulatory decisions concerning pesticides that significantly benefit U.S. food production. Under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, the Environmental Protection Agency is required to refer to the USDA all proposed pesticide cancellation actions.

National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act Amendments of 1981 (P.L. 97-98): Title XIV of the Agriculture and Food Act of 1981. The Act authorized the acquisition and improvement of research facilities and equipment, including agricultural libraries, for 1890 land grant colleges and universities and Tuskegee University.

National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act Amendments of 1985 (P.L. 99-198) (7 U.S.C. §§ 4701-4710): Title XIV of the Food Security Act of 1985. Signed into law December 23, 1985. The Act authorized a greater agricultural information exchange with Ireland, additional research on overcoming trade barriers, pesticide resistance research, an expanded study on agricultural education, and a human nutrition dietary assessment.

National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (NARETPA) (P.L. 95-113): Title XIV of the Food and Agriculture Act of 1977. The Act made the USDA the lead federal agency for agricultural research, extension, and teaching programs. It also consolidated the funding for these programs.

National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board: As authorized by the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (Sec. 1408) through the Federal Agriculture Improvements and Reform Act of 1996 (Sec. 802) and reauthorized and amended by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Secs. 7133 and 7209), the Advisory Board is composed of 31 members appointed by the Secretary to advise the USDA and its land grant university partners on research, extension, education, and economics policies and priorities, and the effectiveness of those policies and priorities. The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7209) increased the board from 30 to 31 members and designated that the new member shall represent a non-land grant college or university with a historic commitment to research in the food and agricultural sciences.

National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS): Through its Washington, D.C. office and 45 state statistical offices, this USDA agency publishes hundreds of reports each year detailing production and prospects for crops, livestock, dairy, and poultry. Other releases focus on stocks, prices, labor, weather, and chemical use. The information is geared towards producers for use in planning for planting, feeding, breeding, and marketing. The data are also used by agricultural organizations and businesses to determine demand for inputs, resources, transportation, and storage. Most estimates are based on information gathered from producers, grain elevators, hatcheries, and other agribusinesses. Beginning in 1997, the NASS is responsible for conducting the Census of Agriculture.

National Animal Damage Control Advisory Committee: See National Wildlife Services Advisory Committee.

National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS): An animal health monitoring system, established by Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service in 1990, to help government officials and industry organizations define public risks and identify research needs and to identify opportunities for producers and veterinarians to improve management and product quality.

National Animal Health Reporting System (NAHRS): A cooperative effort between the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians (AAVLD), the U.S. Animal Health Association (USAHA), and APHIS to provide data on the presence of confirmed disease in commercial livestock, commercial poultry, and commercial aquaculture species in the U.S. The NAHRS provides data for reports required by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) from member countries.

National Animal Identification & Tracking: The NAIS entity that contains and coordinates the AIN allocator, animal identification and tracking systems, and the National Animal Records Repository.

National Animal Identification System (NAIS): A cooperative federal-state-industry program, implemented in 2004 and administered by APHIS, to provide, when fully operational, for the identification of all animals and premises that have had direct contact with a foreign animal disease or disease of concern within 48 hours of discovery to allow for rapid containment and eradication. The main program objective is to develop and implement a comprehensive information system which will (1) support ongoing animal disease monitoring, surveillance, detection, and response capabilities in order to complete current eradication programs; (2) enable state and federal animal health officials to respond rapidly and effectively to animal health emergencies such as foreign animal disease outbreaks or emerging domestic diseases with significant economic, social, or public health consequences; (3) enable state and federal agencies to identify animals at any time that are stolen or lost or scattered through natural disasters such as hurricanes; and, (4) enable state and federal animal health officials to promptly ascertain animal health status for the purpose of issuing intrastate, interstate, or international animal movement certificates. See Biodefense, National Animal Health Reporting System (NAHRS), Traceback, Tracing, Track(ing), and U.S. Animal Identification Plan (USAIP).

National Animal Records Repository: Under the NAIS, the repository for animal identification numbers, or group/lot identification numbers, premises identification numbers of the locations where the events take place, the dates of events, and the event types (movement in, movement out, sighting of an animal at a location, and termination of the animal). See National Animal Identification & Tracking.

National Appeals Division (NAD): A division within the USDA established pursuant to the Department of Agriculture Reorganization Act of 1994 and subject only to the supervision of the Secretary of Agriculture. The NAD hears administrative appeals of adverse decisions made by the Farm Service Agency, Rural Development, Risk Management Agency, and Natural Resources and Conservation Service. Also USDA NAD.

National Aquaculture Act of 1980 (P.L. 96-362) (16 U.S.C. §§ 2801 et seq.): An act to promote and support the development of private aquaculture and to ensure coordination among the various federal agencies that have aquaculture programs and policies. It provided for a national aquaculture plan and authorized the creation of a National Aquaculture Information Center.

National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD): Formed in 1946 to unite conservation districts and their state associations into one voice to help develop national conservation policies, influence lawmakers, and build partnerships with other agencies and organizations. The NACD also provides services to its conservation district members to help them share conservation ideas in order to better serve their local communities.

National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC): The nation’s oldest higher education association, founded in 1887. A voluntary association of public universities, land grant institutions, and many of the nation’s public university systems, NASULGC campuses are located in all 50 states, the U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia. NASULGC is dedicated to supporting excellence in teaching, research, and public service. In 1963, the American Association of Land Grant Colleges and State Universities merged with the National Association of State Universities to create the association in its present configuration. As of September 2000, the association’s membership stood at 211 institutions. This includes 75 land grant universities (of which 17 are the historically black public institutions created by the Second Morrill Act of 1890) and 28 public higher education systems. In addition, tribal colleges became land grant institutions in 1994, and 30 are represented in NASULGC through the membership of the American Indian Higher Education Consortium.

National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG): Dedicated to growth and profitability of all segments of the wheat industry based on creation of expert knowledge processed from global information systems. This results in producers being fully engaged in the wheat chain, producing andmarketing a versatile product, and being the global supplier of first choice of wheat-based products.

National average loan rate(s): The average national loan rates for marketing assistance loans (as opposed to loan rates by class) for covered commodities and peanuts that are used to compute counter-cyclical payments. Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1202(a)), the national average loan rate is set by statute for eligible loan commodities. Other oilseeds have differentiated loan rates instead of a single rate for minor oilseeds as under the previous farm bill.

National average market price: Under former farm bills, the average market prices for program crops that were compared to statutorily established target prices to determine the availability of deficiency payments. Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, the average market price for covered commodities using a national 12-month marketing year average in order to calculate the availability of counter-cyclical payments.

National average yield: Generally, on a national basis, an average yield per acre of a commodity during either five or ten calendar years preceding the year in which such average yield is determined, adjusted for abnormal weather conditions and trends in yields.

National Awards Program for Excellence in College and University Teaching in the Food and Agricultural Sciences: An annual Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service program to honor two outstanding teachers nationally and two in each of four regions who teach in the areas of agriculture, forestry and natural resources, food and consumer sciences, or veterinary medicine. Award funds are to be used to strengthen instructional programs in the food and agricultural sciences.

National Bank for Cooperatives: See CoBank.

National basic quota (tobacco): The division of the basic quota by type of tobacco according to the amount of quota owned by each producer.

National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF): A proposed facility, to replace the aging Plum Island Animal Disease Center, that will house research on high-consequence biological threats involving human, zoonotic diseases, and foreign animal diseases. Because the laboratory and test space in the PIADC is insufficient to support the increasing levels of research and development needed to meet the growing concerns about accidental or intentional introduction of foreign animal diseases into this country, and it is not appropriate for zoonotic disease research, the DHS has been leading an effort to provide new safe, secure, and state-of-the-art agriculture biocontainment laboratories that research and develop diagnostic capabilities for zoonotic diseases and foreign animal diseases.

National Board on Rural America: Under the Rural Strategic Investment Program, the board that will develop a national strategic investment plan, certify regional investment boards and approve their work, authorize grants from funds made available to the program, and report annually to the House and Senate. The Board will have 15 members including a USDA representative. Other members will represent nationally recognized entrepreneurship organizations, regional planning and development organizations, community-based organizations, the rural philanthropic community, Indian tribes, and elected members of county or state governments.

National Boll Weevil Eradication Program: A federal-state-producer cost-share integrated pest management program designed to control cotton boll weevils which cause over $300 million in damages annually. Since its implementation by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service  over 30 years ago, the program has led to the eradication of boll weevils on 5.9 million acres in the U.S., mostly in the southeast and far west. Currently, 7.2 million acres are under active eradication in the mid-south. Another 9.7 million acres are undergoing eradication efforts. Total eradication is expected in early 2006.

National Broiler Council (NBC): See National Chicken Council (NCC).

National Cattle Evaluation: Programs of cattle evaluation conducted by breed associations to genetically compare animals. Carefully conducted national cattle evaluation programs give unbiased estimates of expected progeny differences (EPD). Cattle evaluations are based on field data, and rely on information from the individual animal, relatives, and progeny to calculate EPDs.

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA): Founded in 1898, with offices in Denver, Chicago, and Washington, D.C., the association represents 40,000 individual members, 46 state cattle associations, and 26 national breed organizations. The NCBA is a consumer-focused, producer- directed organization that coordinates state-national efforts to build demand for beef, works to advance the economic, political, and social interests of the U.S. cattle business, and is an advocate for the cattle industry’s policy positions and economic interests.

National Center of Excellence program (NCE): One-year partnership agreements between eight rural institutions of higher education and the USDA. The NCE program focuses on economic opportunity, sustainable community development, community-based partnerships, and a strategic vision for change. The agreements support strong information sharing and technical assistance links between Empowerment Zone and Enterprise Communities, state USDA Rural Development field staff, colleges and universities, civic organizations, and other rural communities. Each NCE will receive $20,000 and the program will be administered through the Office of Community Development.

National charter: A proposed charter to allow a Farm Credit System direct lender association to expand its lending and related services activities beyond its current boundaries except in certain exempted territory. Even if a particular association did not apply for a national charter, its territory would be included in the charter of other System associations that received a national charter (except for exempt institutions for which consent was required). With a charter, a direct lender association could offer all lending and related services authorized by statute and regulations within its national charter territory. The Farm Credit Administration abandoned the proposal in October 2001.

National Cheese Exchange (NCE): spot market important to pricing 80 to 90 percent of wholesale cheese sales in the U.S. until 1997. The NCE price also served as a principal component for determining the basic formula price for milk sold under federal milk marketing orders. Since September 1, 1998, the NCE has been replaced by daily cheese trading on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

National Chicken Council (NCC): Represents the companies that produce, process, and market chickens and chicken products in the U.S. Member companies account for nearly 95 percent of the chicken sold in the country. The organization was formerly known as the NationalBroiler Council until its name change in 1999.

National Commission on Small Farms: The 30-member USDA commission appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture, in July 1997, to examine the status of small farms in the U.S., and to determine a course of action for the USDA to recognize, respect, and respond to their needs. In January 1998 the Commission issued a report, A Time to Act, that contained 146 recommendations (based on written and spoken testimony from more than 600 people at seven public meetings held throughout the country) for things the USDA and Congress might do to assist small producers. The Commission’s term expired in July 1999. See Advisory Committee on Small Farms, Assisting America’s Small Farmers and Ranchers in the 21st Century, Small Farm Coordinators, Small Farms Council, and Small Farms Policy.

National Competitive Research Initiative: See National Research Initiative (competitive grants program) (NRI).

National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments (NCIMS): A cooperative program between the federal government, all 50 states and one territory, and the dairy industry that was first conceived in 1946 with the first conference held in 1950. The NCIMS is instrumental in developing sound and more uniform milk sanitation programs and a greater degree of reciprocity between states on acceptance of inspection and laboratory results.

National Conference on Rural America: Under the Rural Strategic Investment Program, a national conference is to be held sometime between November 1, 2002, and October 30, 2004, for the purpose of producing policy recommendations and integrative strategies for addressing the unique challenges facing the rural areas of the U.S. and for implementing a plan with outcome-based measurements. The conferees shall be chosen by the President and the House and Senate Agriculture Committees (one-third each), and members will be selected based upon diversity in expertise, race, ethnicity, and language. The conferees will submit a report to the President with findings and recommendations addressing telecommunications, health, transportation, economic diversification and innovation, human resources, financing and capital, and public-private collaborations.

National Conservation Buffer Initiative: A public-private partnership begun in 1997 with the goal of helping landowners install two million miles of conservation buffers. The initiative is a multiyear effort led by the Natural Resources Conservation Service in cooperation with other USDA agencies, state conservation agencies, conservation districts, agribusinesses, and agricultural and environmental organizations.

National Conservation Priority Area: A watershed, multi-state area, or region of specific environmental sensitivity designated by the Chief of the Natural Resources Conservation Service or Farm Service Agency Administrator.

National Conservation Program: Through this program the Natural Resources Conservation Service assists states, local units of government, tribes, and other sponsoring organizations to address water-related and other natural resource issues, to conduct studies, to develop watershed plans, and to implement resource management systems. The program includes projects carried out under the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Act of 1954 and the 11 watersheds authorized under the Flood Control Act of 1944 (P.L. 78-534).

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA): The trade organization representing American corn growers. Nearly 30,000 corn growers from 47 states belong to the NCGA. A total of 25 state corn grower associations and 16 state corn boards, councils, and commissions are affiliated with the NCGA.

National Cotton Council of America (NCC): Established to ensure the ability of all U.S. cotton industry segments to compete effectively and profitably in the raw cotton, oilseed, and U.S.-manufactured product markets at home and abroad. The Council’s goal is to serve as the central forum for consensus-building among producers, ginners, warehousemen, merchants, cottonseed crushers, cooperatives, and textile manufacturers.

National Council of Farmer Cooperatives (NCFC): Established to protect the public policy environment in which producer-owned cooperative businesses operate, promote their economic well-being, and provide leadership in cooperative education. The NCFC remains the only organization serving exclusively America’s producer-owned cooperative businesses.

National Cropland Acreage (NCA): As a concept for farm bill debates, each farm is assigned a nonspecific commodity base that would be the accumulation of all current farm acreage bases for each farm plus set-aside land. Producers would have the flexibility to plant whatever commodity they wished within the limits of the share of the NCA assigned to each farm. Conserving uses for set-asides would be required.

National Dairy Market Loss payments: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1502), a counter-cyclical program that pays producers in any month in which the Class I price at Boston falls below $16.94. If such an event occurs, producers in all states receive 45 percent of the difference between $16.94 per hundredweight and the Boston price. An operation may not receive payments on more than 2.4 million pounds of production in any fiscal year. The program is authorized until September 30, 2005. The program is more commonly known as the Milk Income Loss Contract Program.

National Dairy Promotion and Research Board: Established by the Dairy Production Stabilization Act of 1983 and composed of 36 members representing 13 dairy regions of the contiguous U.S. The board is authorized to administer a coordinated program of promotion, research, and nutrition education by designing programs to strengthen the dairy industry’s position in domestic and foreign markets. The national program is financed by a mandatory 15-cents per hundredweight assessment on dairy products produced in the contiguous 48 states and marketed commercially by dairy producers. The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1505) authorized importer assessments and added two positions to the board to represent importer interests. The Act also provided for reapportionment of the board after three years to reflect the percentage of imported dairy products to total marketings. The Agricultural Marketing Service monitors the operation of the board. See Dairy Promotion and Research Program.

National Dairy Promotion and Research Program: See Dairy Promotion and Research Program.

National Drought Council (Interim): The Interim Council, representing federal, state, and local interests, that constitutes a partnership dedicated to a more comprehensive, integrated, coordinated approach towards reducing the impacts of drought through better preparedness, monitoring and prediction, risk management, and response to drought emergencies in the U.S. The Interim Council will strive to cooperatively plan for and implement measures to coordinate drought programs and respond effectively, efficiently, and in a customer-oriented manner. The Interim Council was recommended by the National Drought Policy Commission’s report, Preparing for Drought in the 21st Century.

National Drought Policy Act of 1998 (P.L.105-199): See National Drought Policy Commission (NDPC).

National Drought Policy Commission (NDPC): With passage of the National Drought Policy Act of 1998, Congress established the National Drought Policy Commission composed of 15 members that represent all levels of government and other drought-impacted groups. Its charge was to provide advice and recommendations on the creation of an integrated, coordinated federal policy designed to prepare for and respond to serious drought emergencies. In May 2000, the Commission issued its final report, Preparing for Drought in the 21st Century – Report of the National Drought Policy Commission, which held that national drought policy should use the resources of the federal government to support but not supplant nor interfere with state, regional, local, tribal, and personal efforts to reduce drought impacts. The guiding principles of national drought policy should be (a) favor preparedness over insurance, insurance over relief, and incentives over regulation; (b) set research priorities based on the potential of the research results to reduce drought impacts; and (c) coordinate the delivery of federal services through cooperation and collaboration with nonfederal entities. See National Drought Council (Interim).

National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (P.L. 91-190) (42 U.S.C. §§ 4321-4347): Signed into law January 1, 1970, and amended in 1975 and 1994. The Act declares it a national policy to encourage productive and enjoyable harmony between man and the environment, and promote efforts to better understand and prevent damage to ecological systems and natural resources important to the nation. Agencies are required to prepare a detailed environmental impact statement for any major federal action significantly affecting the environment. The Act also establishes the Council on Environmental Quality to review government policies and programs for conformity with NEPA.

National Farm Animal Identification and Records (FAIR): An animal identification pilot program that unifies animal identification programs and links animal record systems to provide accurate, complete and cost-effective information to meet the various needs of the industry. The program has identified nearly one million animals over a five year period. Nearly 1,400 dairy and livestock farms utilize electronic ear tags in 12 states. One goal of the pilot program is to validate the retention of the RFID ear tags and the reliability and accuracy of RFID stationary readers at the packing plants. The national FAIR is administered by the Holstein Association USA, Inc. and supported by APHIS. The program utilizes RFID technology and a database to track animals with electronic ear tags from birth, farm to farm, and then to the abattoir. See National Animal Identification System (NAIS).

National farm program acreage: The number of harvested acres of feed grains, wheat, upland cotton, and rice needed nationally to meet domestic and export use and to accomplish any desired increase or decrease in carryover levels. Program acreage for an individual farm is based on that farm’s share of the national farm program acreage.

National Farmers Organization (NFO): general farm organization located in 37 states, and active in negotiating contracts and sales for its members. The NFO was formed during the producers’ protest movement in 1955.

National Farmers Union (NFU): general farm organization, formed in 1902, located in 19 states and representing 300,000 farm and ranch families.

National Fluid Milk Processor Promotion Board: Established by the Fluid Milk Promotion Act of 1990 to develop and administer a coordinated program of advertising and promotion to increase the demand for fluid milk products, and composed of 15 fluid milk processors from 15 geographic regions and five at-large members. The national program is financed by a mandatory 20-cent per hundredweight assessment on all fluid milk products processed and marketed commercially in consumer-type packages in the contiguous 48 states and the District of Columbia. Processors who commercially process and market less than 3 million pounds per month are exempt from assessments. The Agricultural Marketing Service oversees board operations.

National Food Service Management Institute (NFSMI): Conducts activities to help improve the quality and general operation of the child nutrition programs. The NFSMI provides information, conducts applied research, and offers technical assistance, training, educational opportunities, and materials using appropriate technology.

National Forest Management Act of 1976 (P.L. 94-588): Signed into law October 22, 1976. The National Forest Management Act (as amended) reorganized, expanded, and otherwise amended the management of renewable resources on national forest lands. The Act requires the Department of the Interior to assess forest lands, develop a management program based on multiple-use forestry, and implement a resource management plan for each unit of the National Forest System. It is the primary statute governing the administration of national forests.

National Forest System: The Forest Service manages public lands, known collectively as the National Forest System, located in 44 states, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. The lands comprise 8.5 percent of the total land area in the U.S. The National Forest System includes 155 national forests with 187 million acres (97.7 percent of the system), 20 national grasslands with four million acres (2.0 percent), and 103 other units, such as land utilization projects, purchase units, and research and experimental areas, with 474,315 acres (0.2 percent). The National Forest System lands are concentrated in the West, but the Forest Service manages more federal land in the East than all other Federal agencies combined. The National Forest System units are arranged into nine administrative regions. The nine Regional Foresters report to the Deputy Chief for National Forest System, who (along with Deputy Chiefs for other branches) reports to the Chief of the Forest Service. In contrast to most other federal agencies, the Chief has traditionally been a career employee of the agency rather than a political appointee.

National forest(s): A federal reservation (generally forest, range, or other wild land) that is administered by the Forest Service under a program of multiple-use and sustained yield for timber, range, catchment, wildlife, and outdoor recreational purposes.

National Forest-Dependent Rural Communities Economic Diversification Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-624) (7 U.S.C. §§ 6611 et seq.): Title XXIII of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 authorized providing assistance to rural communities that are located in or near national forests and that are economically dependent on forest resources or are likely to be economically disadvantaged by federal or private sector land management practices to diversify their economic bases and to improve their economic, social, and environmental well-being.

National Forest-dependent rural community(ies): Any rural community in which at least 15 percent of the total primary and secondary labor and proprietor income is derived from forestry, wood products, and forest-related industries such as recreation, forage production, and tourism, and that is located within the boundary or within 100 miles of the boundary of a national forest.

National Genetics Resources Advisory Council: Authorized by the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (Sec. 1634) and reauthorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7118). The Council advises the Secretary of Agriculture and the Director of the National Genetics Resources Program regarding policies and operations of the National Genetics Resources Program including coordination of plant and animal genome and germplasm programs, policies on critical research, and policies on the integration of genomics and biotechnology.

National Genetics Resources Program (NGRP): The program authorized by the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (Secs. 1632-1635) and reauthorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7118) to acquire, characterize, preserve, document, and distribute to scientists the germplasm of all life forms important for food and agricultural production. See National Genetics Resources Advisory Council.

National Grange: Organized in 1867 to assist producers whose livelihood had been destroyed by the War Between the States. It is the nation’s oldest agricultural fraternity, with units in 3,600 local communities in 37 states. Also Patrons of Husbandry.

National grassland(s): Land, mainly grass and shrub cover, administered by the Forest Service as part of the National Forest System for promotion of grassland agriculture, watersheds, grazing wildlife, and recreation.

National initiatives (Extension): The response of the Cooperative Extension System to important problems of broad national concern. Additional resources through Smith-Lever 3(d) funding is provided to System units to allow the units to significantly increase their efforts in the priority areas. These areas include water quality; children, youth, and families at risk; waste management; sustainable agriculture; managing change in agriculture; food quality and safety; communities in economic transition; decisions for health; and the plight of young children.

National List: See National List of Allowed Synthetic and Prohibited Non-Synthetic Substances.

National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances: See National List of Allowed Synthetic and Prohibited Non-Synthetic Substances.

National List of Allowed Synthetic and Prohibited Non-Synthetic Substances: Known commonly as the National List, it identifies specific substances, including synthetic and natural substances, that may or may not be used for organic farming and handling. See National Organic Program, Organic certification, and Organic farming. Also National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances.

National marketing quota(s): See Marketing quota(s).

National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF): commodity organization representing most of the nation’s dairy marketing cooperatives. The NMPF provides a forum through which dairy producers and their cooperatives formulate policy on national issues that effect milk production andmarketing. The work of the NMPF is aimed at improving the economic well-being of dairy producers, thus assuring the nation’s consumers an adequate supply of pure, wholesome milk and dairy products.

National Nutrition Monitoring Advisory Council: Provided scientific and technical advice to the Secretaries of Agriculture and Health and Human Services on national nutrition monitoring including the survey of food intakes by individuals. The Council has been discontinued.

National Nutrition Monitoring and Related Research Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-445): Signed into law October 22, 1990. This Act was passed to strengthen national nutrition monitoring. It authorized development and implementation of a plan by the USDA and the Department of Health and Human Services to assess the dietary and nutritional status of the U.S. population, to support research and development of nutrition monitoring, to foster national nutrition education, and to establish dietary guidelines.

National Office of Outreach: See Office of Outreach.

National Organic Certification Cost-Share Program: cost-share program authorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 10606) to provide up to 75 percent of the costs incurred by producers and handlers in obtaining organic certification.

National Organic Program (NOP): The Agricultural Marketing Service-administered program that establishes strict standards for organic certification and labeling. Any farm, wild crop harvesting, or handling operation that wants to sell an agricultural product as organically produced must adhere to the national organic standards. Handling operations include processors and manufacturers of organic foods. These requirements include operating under an organic system plan approved by an accredited certifying agent and using materials in accordance with the National List of Allowed Synthetic and Prohibited Non-Synthetic Substances. The final rule for implementing the National Organic Program was published in December 2000 with full compliance required by October 2002. See Organic farming.

National organic standards: Under the National Organic Program, standards that address the methods, practices, and substances used in producing and handling crops, livestock, and processed agricultural products. The requirements apply to the way the product is created, not to measurable properties of the product itself. Although specific practices and materials used by organic operations may vary, the standards require every aspect of organic production and handling to comply with the provisions of the Organic Foods Production Act. Organically produced food cannot be produced using excluded methods, sewage sludge, or ionizing radiation.

National Organic Standards Board (NOSB): Established to provide recommendations to the Secretary of Agriculture on implementing Title XXI of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 which authorized a national organic farming program establishing national standards for the production and certification of organically produced foods. The 15-member board, first appointed in 1992, developed recommendations for establishing the National Organic Program. The board is expected to continue recommending refinements in the program and reviewing substances considered for organic farming and handling. The current board is comprised of four producers, two handlers/processors, one retailer, one scientist, three consumer/public interest advocates, three environmentalists, and one certifying agent.

National Partnership Office (NPO): The administrative center of the National Rural Development Partnership (NRDP), housed within the USDA. The NPO provides the NRDP with oversight and programmatic and technical support. See National Rural Development Council (NRDC).

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES): The Clean Water Act of 1972 prohibits the discharging of pollutants through a point source into the water of the United States without a NPDES permit.

National Pork Producers Council (NPPC): One of the nation’s largest livestock commodity organizations. It has 85,000 producer members in 44 affiliated state associations. Its mission is to enhance opportunities for the success of U.S. pork producers and other industry stakeholders by establishing the U.S. pork industry as a consistent and responsible supplier of high-quality pork to the domestic and world markets.

National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP): program that certifies poultry breeding stock and hatcheries are free from egg-transmitted and hatchery-disseminated diseases including Salmonella enteritidis.

National poundage quota: Under the former peanut program, the USDA estimated the quantity of peanuts needed to meet domestic edible use (except seed) and related uses. The national poundage quota restricted the amount of production eligible for the higher of the two-tiered price-support loans. See Farm poundage quota(s) (peanuts).

National Premises Information Repository: Under the premises registration system, the central repository for certain data to support the overall effectiveness of the NAIS including premises identification number, name of entity owner or appropriate contact person, street address, city, state, zip/postal code, contact phone number, operation type (production unit, exhibition, abattoir, etc.), date activated, date retired (date the operation is sold or date operation is no longer maintaining livestock), and reason retired. The contact person should be the person the animal health official is to communicate with when performing a traceback.

National Premises Information System: The system that will include the premises number allocator, premises registration system, and a National Premises Information Repository.

National Research and Teaching Centennial Centers: See National Research and Training Virtual Center(s).

National Research and Training Virtual Center(s): Five national virtual centers for research and training located at 1890 land grant colleges and universities (or a consortia of such) that have the best demonstrable capacity to provide administrative leadership and can assure dissemination of information to agricultural producers. The mandated centers, which are eligible to receive grant funds under the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (Sec. 1448( (7 U.S.C. § 3222c) are (a) a National Center for Goat Research and Training; (b) a National Center for Agricultural Engineering Development, Research, and Training; (c) a National Center for Water Quality and Agricultural Production Research and Training; (d) a National Center forSustainable Agriculture Research and Training; and (e) a National Center for Domestic and International Trade and Development Research and Training. Such centers were formerly known as centennial centers.

National Research Initiative (competitive grants program) (NRI): Initially funded in 1991, this federal-state partnership initiative administers agricultural research competitive grants designed to revitalize and strengthen basic research in the areas of plant systems, animal systems, nutrition, food quality, health, natural resources and the environment, engineering processes and value-added goods, and rural development, markets, and trade. The program was reauthorized in the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (Sec. 885) and the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7136). Also National Competitive Research Initiative.

National Research Support Project No. 7 (NRSP-7): Minor-use animal drug program.

National Resources Inventory (NRI): A series of inventories or surveys, conducted by the Natural Resources Conservation Service every five years, to assess the conditions and trends of the nation’s soil and water-related resources on nonfederal lands These resources include land use and land cover, soil erosion, prime farmland, and wetlands. The NRI is being converted to an annual cycle.

National Rural Development Council (NRDC): Consists of senior program managers, representing over 40 federal agencies, as well as national representatives of public interest, community-based, and private-sector organizations. The NRDC provides guidance for the National Rural Development Partnership and works on behalf of the State Rural Development Councils at the national level. See National Rural Development Partnership (NRDP).

National Rural Development Partnership (NRDP): Works to strengthen rural America through collaborative partnerships. The NRDP brings together partners from local, state, tribal, and federal governments as well as from the for-profit and nonprofit private sector. The NRDP has three main components: (a) State Rural Development Councils, (b) National Rural Development Council, and (c) the National Partnership Office.

National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA): The national service organization that represents the national interests of consumer-owned cooperative electric utilities. The association is the liaison to Congress and the Executive Branch and represents the utilities in legal and regulatory proceedings affecting electric service and the environment. The NRECA also offers education and training programs for cooperative directors, managers, and employees; collaborative research to enhance the cooperatives’ use of technology and insurance, employee benefits, and financial services; and technical advice and electrification assistance in developing countries around the world.

National Rural Information Center Clearinghouse (7 U.S.C. § 3125b)): Created by the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (Sec. 2381) and reauthorized through FY2007 by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7101). The Clearinghouse is established within the National Agricultural Library, in coordination with the Extension Service, to provide and distribute information and data to any industry, organization, or government entity about programs and services provided by federal, state, and local agencies and private nonprofit organizations and institutions on any kind of assistance including job training, education, health care, economic development assistance, and emotional and financial counseling to rural citizens or institutions or governmental agencies.

National Rural Telework Institute: An institute authorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 6022) to support and encourage the development of telework centers through research and development, outreach to rural communities and employers, sharing best practices, and establishing rural telework projects.

National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corporation (CFC): To finance its growing capital needs, the rural electric program began in the mid-1960s to seek alternative funding sources to supplement government lending. In 1967 the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) approved the creation of a not-for-profit financing institution that would be cooperatively owned by rural electric systems themselves. The CFC is a not-for-profit cooperative whose mission is to provide its member utility systems with an assured source of low-cost capital, state-of-the-art financial products, and business management services.

National School Lunch Act (P.L. 79-396): Signed into law June 4, 1946. The Act declared that as a measure of national security, to safeguard the health and well-being of the Nation’s children, and to encourage the domestic consumption of nutritious agricultural commodities and other food, the federal government would assist the States, through grants-in aid and other means, in providing an adequate supply of food and other facilities for the establishment, maintenance, operation, and expansion of nonprofit school lunch programs. Funds were provided for food and equipment purchases and to cover administrative expenses. The Act, as amended, was renamed the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act in the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2000 (Sec. 752).

National School Lunch Program (NSLP): The oldest and largest U.S. child-feeding program that provides financial and commodity assistance for meal service in public and nonprofit private high schools, grade schools, and under as well as public and private licensed nonprofit residential child-care institutions. All children may participate in the NSLP, which currently averages serving 25 million children each day. Based on household income poverty guidelines, a child may receive a free, reduced-price, or full-priced meal. Funds are made available by letters of credit to State agencies for use in reimbursing participating schools and other institutions. Also School Lunch Program.

National Science and Technology Council (NSTC): Established by Executive Order on November 23, 1993 as a cabinet-level council that assists the President in coordinating science, space, and technology policies throughout the federal government. Membership consists of the President as chairman, the Vice President, the Assistant to the President for Science and Technology, cabinet secretaries, agency heads with significant science and technology responsibilities, and other White House officials.

National Sheep Industry Improvement Center: Established by the Federal Agriculture Improvements and Reform Act of 1996, the Center will promote activities to strengthen and enhance production and marketing of sheep and goat products in the U.S. The Center may provide loans or grants to eligible entities to assist the industry in infrastructure, resource, and business development, production, and market and environmental research.

National Tobacco Growers’ Settlement Trust: See Phase II.

National treatment: A form of nondiscrimination in trade that requires that once goods have entered into a market, they must be treated no less favorably than equivalent domestically produced goods.

National Turkey Federation (NTF): Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the federation is the national advocate for all segments of the turkey industry providing services and conducting activities which increase demand for its members’ products. The NTF represents the industry in legislative and regulatory affairs, develops consumer education and information resources, publishes a range of communications materials on the latest industry issues and developments, and helps members with specific problems and crisis management.

National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL): An Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service national laboratory providing veterinary diagnostic, laboratory support, and reference services related to domestic and foreign livestock and poultry diseases for programs including the National Animal Health Monitoring System and the National Poultry Improvement Plan. National Water Quality Inventory: A report prepared every two years, under authority of the Clean Water Act of 1972 (Section 305(b)), that summarizes state reports of impairment to their water bodies and the suspected sources of those impairments.

National Veterinary Services Laboratory(ies) (NVSL): APHIS diagnostic laboratories including several facilities in Ames, IA, and the high-security biocontainment Foreign Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory on Plum Island, NY, providing veterinary diagnostic, laboratory support, and reference services related to domestic and foreign livestock and poultry diseases. The various laboratories analyze blood, tissue, and environmental samples to promote disease tracking and identification. Diagnosticians work to help APHIS epidemiologists in the field find the cause of a disease outbreak as quickly as possible. Laboratory workers also assist in quality control of animal vaccines and related products. See Epidemiology (epidemiological).

National Water Quality Inventory: A report prepared every two years under authority of the Clean Water Act of 1972 (Section 305(b)), that summarizes state reports of impairment to their water bodies and the suspected sources of those impairments.

National Wetlands Inventory (NWI): The Fish and Wildlife Service was mandated by Congress to complete wetlands and deepwater habitats mapping of the conterminous U.S. by 1998 and to produce a wetlands digital database for all 50 states by 2004. To date, 90 percent of the lower 48 states and 34 percent of Alaska have been mapped. The data provide consultants, planners, and resource managers with information on wetland location and type.

National Wildlife Services Advisory Committee: Formerly known as the National Animal Damage Control Advisory Committee. The Committee provides advice to the Secretary of Agriculture concerning policies, program issues, and research needed to conduct the Wildlife Services program. The Committee also serves as a public forum enabling those affected by the WS program to have a voice in the program’s policies.

National Wool Act Amendments of 1993 (P.L. 103-130): Signed into law November 1, 1993. The Act provided for the phasing out of the wool and mohair programs over the 1994 and 1995 marketing years and repealed the National Wool Act of 1954, effective December 31, 1995.

National Wool Act of 1954 (P.L. 83-690): Signed into law August 28, 1954. Found in Title VII of the Agricultural Act of 1954, the Act provided for a new price-support program for wool and mohair to encourage a certain level of domestic production (set at 300 million pounds for 1955).

Nationwide permit(s): The blanket authorization by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permitting routine or minor activities that have minimal impacts on the aquatic environment to take place in wetlands.

Native American Institutions Endowment Fund: Authorized by the Equity in Educational Land Grant Status Act of 1994 and amended by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7128). The Act provides the first installment into an endowment fund for thirty 1994 land grant colleges to enhance the educational opportunities for Native Americans. See 1994 Land grant colleges (institutions), and Tribal Colleges Education Equity Grants Program.

Native Latex Commercialization and Economic Development Act (P.L. 95-592) (7 U.S.C. §§ 178 et seq.); Signed into law November 4, 1978. The Act authorized a program of research, development, and demonstration of guayule rubber production and manufacture as an economic development opportunity for the Southwestern States. The program was an attempt to lessen U.S. dependence on imports of natural latex. See Critical Agricultural Materials Act.

Native pasture: Pastureland that is used and managed primarily for the production of native plants for forage. Native vegetation: Those plant species and communities that are endemic to a given area and that would normally be identified as occurring as a result of the natural vegetative process of the area.

Native vegetation: Those plant species and communitites that are endemic to a given area and that would normally be identified as occurring as a result of the natural vegetative process of the area.

Natto soybean(s); Small, clear soybeans with thin seed coats and high carbohydrate content primarily grown for fermented soybean foods. The fermentation process breaks down the complex proteins, making them more easily digested than whole soybeans. Natto soybeans are traditionally served in Japan as a topping for rice.

Natural; A product, containing no artificial ingredient or added color, that is only minimally processed using a process that does not fundamentally alter the raw product.

Natural farming: A farming method involving no tillage, no fertilizer, no pesticides, no weeding, no pruning, and minimal labor. The practice requires careful timing of seeding and careful combinations of plants (polyculture). Sometimes called “do-nothing farming.”

Natural fermentation: See Fermentation.

Natural resource district: See Conservation district(s).

Natural resource management plans; See Conservation plan(s).

Natural Resources and Environment: The USDA mission area that includes the Forest Service and the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS): Successor to the Soil Conservation Service. Its mission is to help private landowners, communities, and governmental agencies effectively address natural resource management issues. The NRCS delivers technical assistance based on sound science and suited to specific needs and cost sharing and financial incentives in some cases. The NRCS works in partnership with local conservation districts and the Farm Service Agency. See Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), Farmland Protection Program (FPP), Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative (GLCI), Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention (Operations) Program, Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP), and Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP).

Natural state; See Raw or natural state.

Nature farming: Farming practices that focus on analyzing and building soil through the use of compost, green manure, mulch, and various other soil management techniques. Similar in many ways to organic farming, nature farming is most commonly practiced in North America and the Pacific Rim countries of Asia.

Naval stores; Spirits of turpentine and rosin. Turpentine is gum spirits made from gum of living trees and wood turpentine extracted or distilled from wood. Rosin is gum rosin and wood rosin that remain after the distillation of spirits of turpentine.

Naval Stores Act (7 U.S.C. §§ 91-99): Signed into law March 3, 1923. The Act established standards for naval stores.

NAWG: National Association of Wheat Growers

NBAF; National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility

NBC: National Broiler Council

NCA: National Cattlemen’s Association

NCA: National Cropland Acreage

NCA; Normal Crop Acreage

NCBA; National Cattlemen’s Beef Association

NCC: National Chicken Council

NCC: National Cotton Council of America

NCE: National Cheese Exchange

NCFC: National Council of Farmer Cooperatives

NCGA: National Corn Growers Association

NCIMS: National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments

NCP: National Conservation Program

NDM: Non-fat dry milk

NDPC: National Drought Policy Commission

NE: Northern Europe; Northern Europe price

Necrosis: The death of cells or tissue due to disease, injury, exposure to chemical agents, or radiation.

Negotiable marketing certificate(s); Marketing certificates that can be exchanged for cash or commodities. See Generic commodity certificate(s).

Negotiated purchase: In livestock purchasing, a cash market or spot market purchase by a packer of livestock from a producer under which (a) the base price for the livestock is determined by seller-buyer interaction and agreement on a specific day, and (b) the livestock are scheduled for delivery to the packer not later than 14 days after the date on which the livestock are committed to the packer.

Negotiated sale: In livestock purchasing, a cash market or spot market sale by a producer of livestock to a packer under which (a) the base price for the livestock is determined by seller-buyer interaction and agreement on a specific day, and (b) the livestock are scheduled for delivery to the packer not later than 14 days after the date on which the livestock are committed to the packer.

Nematicides: Substances used to kill parasitic worms, called nematodes, that are abundant in many soils. Many nematodes attack and destroy plant roots. See Nematodes.

Nematode(s): A microscopic soil worm that may attack roots or other structures of plants and cause extensive damage.

Nematologist: One who studies nematodes.

Nep(s): A small tangled fiber knot often caused by processing.

NEPA: National Environmental Policy Act of 1969

Nest-run eggs: Eggs that are packed as they come from the production facilities without having been washed, sized, and candled for quality; some checks, dirties, or other obvious undergrades may have been removed.

Nested: Any lot of tobacco that has been loaded, packed, or arranged so as to conceal tobacco of inferior grade, quality, or condition.

NET: Nutrition Education and Training

Net book premium: The total premium calculated for all eligible crop insurance contracts, less the administrative and operating subsidy, cancellations, and adjustments.

Net cash income: The gross cash income minus cash expenses. Many economists prefer this measure of farm income because it shows production agriculture’s ability to handle cash flow. It has fewer estimated numbers and is fairly stable. It also avoids the adjustments in inventory values that can cause large swings in reported net farm income.

Net farm income: (1) A measurement of the profit or loss associated with a given year’s production. It is an approximation of the net value of agricultural production, regardless of whether the commodities were sold, fed, or placed in inventory during the year. Netfarm income equals the difference between gross farm income and total expenses. It includes nonmoney items such as depreciation, the consumption of farm-grown food, and the net imputed rental value of farm operator dwellings. Additions to inventory are treated as income. (2) The sum of all income minus expenses from the farm operation, including maintenance and depreciation of all buildings, machinery, and dwellings located on the farm. To derive this figure, gross income (income before expenses) is adjusted to account for net quantity changes in inventory and year-to-year carryover.

Net fishing income: Under the Trade Adjustment Assistance for Farmers program, net profit or loss reported on IRS Schedules C or C-EZ (Form 1040) for individuals, or taxable income reported on Form 1120 for corporations, during the tax year that most closely corresponds with the marketing year under consideration.

Net income: A measurement of the net return to unpaid labor, management, and equity capital. The primary difference between cash and accrual net income is that accrual income includes adjustments for changes in inventory and changes in accrual items such as prepaid expenses, accounts payable, and accounts receivable. Accrual net income more accurately reflects the profitability of a business over an accounting period. Also Accrual net income.

Net Income Stabilization Account (NISA): farm policy risk management option, proposed for the 1996 farm bill, that was modeled after the Canadian program by which producers could contribute a portion of their farm sales to a fund that the government would match up to a set amount. Interest was to be earned on the account. Producers could withdraw funds from the account in years when farm income fell below a pre-specified trigger. See Farmer savings account(s).

Net pen: A fish culture method utilizing cages made of netting. Net pens are used in waters from which cultured fish cannot be easily captured for harvest. Net pens take advantage of an existing water body’s circulation to wash away wastes and bring fresh water to the fish or shellfish. See Cage(s)(ed), Pond(s), Raceway(s), and Recirculating systems.

Net present value; The sum of the costs and benefits of a project or activity. Future benefits and costs are discounted to account for interest costs.

Net realized losses (reimbursements): Action by the Congressional Appropriations committees, through current indefinite appropriations, to restore the Commodity Credit Corporation for revolving fund losses.

Net value-added: The total value of the farm sector’s output of goods and services less payments to other (nonfarm) sectors of the economy. It reflects production agriculture’s addition to the national economic product. It also represents the sum of the economic returns to all the providers of factors of production: farm laborers, lenders, landlords, and farm operators.

Net worth: The financial claim by owners on the total assets of a business; calculated as total assets less total liabilities equals net worth. Also called equity capital and ownership equity.

Network: A group of machines connected together to transmit information to one another. There are two kinds of networks: local networks and remote networks.

New crops: (1) A newly discovered genera or species. (2) Newly introduced cultivars of plants grown in earlier years but forgotten or without complete cultural information. (3) Plants that are cultivated in foreign countries but have not been introduced in the U.S. (4) Crops that can be produced with new production technologies which can enhance crop quality and shorten the total production time.

New farm (tobacco); farm for which an acreage allotment or marketing quota is established for the current year from a national reserve that is set aside for such purpose from the national acreage allotment or national marketing quota established for the kind oftobacco in question.

New microorganisms: Microorganisms formed by combining genetic material from organisms in different genera.

New money: For credit institutions, new (not recurring) loan or lease business.

Newcastle disease: A viral disease of poultry that causes respiratory problems and paralysis.

Newly industrialized country(ies) (NIC): A country, previously considered less developed, that has achieved a significant level of economic development largely through heavy industrialization.

NFA: Normal flex(ible) acres(age)

NFDM: Non-fat dry milk

NFO: National Farmers Organization

NFSMI: National Food Service Management Institute

NFU: National Farmers Union

NGO: Nongovernmental organization

NGRP: National Genetics Resources Program

NIC: Newly industrialized country(ies)

Niche market(ing) (grain): See Identity-preserved specialty grain.

NIPF: Nonindustrial private forest land

NISA: Net income stabilization account

Nitrate: fertilizer made of potassium nitrate or sodium nitrate. Nitrate pollution, caused by the leaching of nitrates from agricultural chemicals and animal wastes, is a leading cause of groundwater contamination.

Nitrification inhibitors: Chemical compounds that can be added to the ammonia fertilizers to slow the conversion of ammonium nitrogen to nitrate nitrogen, which is susceptible to leaching. N-inhibitors can be used with manure and other forms of organic nitrogen fertilizer.

Nitrogen (N): A chemical element essential to life and one of the primary plant nutrients. Animals get nitrogen from protein feeds; plants get it from soil; and some bacteria get it directly from the air. See Macronutrient(s).

Nitrogen fixation: (1) The chemical transformation of atmospheric nitrogen (N2) into forms available to plants for growth. Certain species of symbiotic and free-living bacteria can accomplish nitrogen fixation. The more efficient forms are symbiotic with plants, where a food supply and a protected environment are provided to the bacteria within root nodules. The bacteria, in turn, supply fixed nitrogen to the plant. Strains of the genus Rhizihium are the symbiotic, nitrogen-fixing bacteria that associate with leguminous crops such as beans, clover, and alfalfa. Seeds of leguminous crops are often inoculated with a slurry of Rhizobium spores to promote nitrogen fixation by the crop. (2) The conversion of elemental nitrogen (N2) from the atmosphere to organic combinations or to forms readily utilizable in biological processes. Symbiotic fixation is accomplished by nodule bacteria in legumes, by other microorganisms in certain nodulated non-legumes, and by blue-green algae in some lichens.

NME: Nonmarket economy

NMP: Nutrient management plan

NMPF: National Milk Producers Federation

No Observable (Adverse) Effect Level (NOEL/NOAEL): The highest dose of a chemical that does not produce a measurable (adverse) health effect on a laboratory animal. See Lowest Observable (Adverse) Effect Level (LOEL/LOAEL).

No-cost (sugar): As a requirement under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, to the maximum extent possible, the sugar program will be operated at no cost to the federal government through avoiding forfeitures of nonrecourse loans to theCommodity Credit Corporation. Processors may obtain raw cane sugar and refined beet sugar from the CCC in exchange for reducing production of the same. Another tool for reducing costs is the use of flexible marketing allotments. See No-net-cost.

No-net-cost: program provision in which producers are assessed to finance the cost of the program. The U.S. tobacco program was designed to be a no-net-cost program to the federal government. See Assessment(s) (programs), No-cost (sugar), andNo-net-cost programs.

No-net-cost programs: (1) A price-support program provision requiring the tobacco price-support program to be operated at no cost to the federal government. The No-Net-Cost Tobacco Program Act of 1982 required that to be eligible for price-supports, producers of all kinds of tobacco must pay assessments to cover potential losses in operating the price-support program. Since 1994, tobacco imports are also subject to assessments. (2) The Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996required that the peanut price-support program be a no-net-cost program. This was largely accomplished by the elimination of a mandated floor for the establishment of the annual farm poundage quota. The conversion of the peanut program with passage of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 eliminated the no-net-cost requirement. (3) Under the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 mandate, the sugar program was to be operated so that forfeituresof sugar to the Commodity Credit Corporation would be avoided, but a specific “no cost” provision was repealed. The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 included a “no-cost” requirement.

No-Net-Cost Tobacco Program Act of 1982 (P.L. 97-218): This law required that to be eligible for price-supports, producers of all kinds of tobacco, beginning with the 1982 crop, had to contribute to a fund or pay assessments to an account established by the cooperative association that makes federal price-support loans available to producers. The funds are collected to cover potential losses in operating the tobacco price-support program. See Tobacco loan, and Tobacco (price-support) program.

No-net-loss wetland(s) policy: A federal policy, first announced in 1985 by President Bush, to halt the decline of wetlands acreage in the U.S. President Clinton later modified the policy to include a short-term goal of no overall net loss of the nation’s remaining wetlands resource base and a long-term goal of increasing the quality and quantity of the nation’s wetlands. The George W. Bush administration reaffirmed its commitment to the policy in January 2003.

No-roll: Those carcasses that do not officially receive a grade at a packing plant and are, therefore, not rolled with a grade stamp.

No-till: The soil is left undisturbed, except for nutrient injection, from harvest until planting. Planting or drilling is accomplished in a narrow seedbed or slot created by coulters, row cleaners, disk openers, in-row chisels, or roto-tillers. Weed control is accomplished primarily with herbicides. Cultivation may be used for emergency weed control. It is best suited for sloping lands that are highly erosive.

No-till fallow: A type of no-till system used on dryland areas. No-till fallow is most successful in summer rainfall areas. A major goal of fallowing is to recharge the soil profile with water so that the risk of failure for the next crop is greatly reduced. The potential benefits of no-till fallow, compared with other tillage systems, are more effective control of soil erosion, increased water storage, lower energy costs per unit of production, and higher crop yields. A major disadvantage of no-till fallow is its heavy use of herbicides for weed control. Sometimes referred to as chemical fallow.

No-year appropriation: An appropriation that is obligated for an indefinite period. The unobligated balances of one-year and multiyear appropriations revert to the Treasury at the end of the period for which they are provided.

NOAA; National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOAA weather radio (NWR): A nationwide network of radio stations broadcasting continuous weather information direct from a nearby National Weather Service office. The NWR broadcasts National Weather Service warnings, watches, forecasts, and other hazard information 24 hours a day.

NOEL/NOAEL: No observable (adverse) effect level

Noil: Short fibers removed during the combing process of yarn making.

Nominal rate of interest: The actual rate of interest paid without any adjustment for inflation.

Nominal tariff rate: The rate of duty charged on the gross value of a given product.

Non-ambulatory disabled livestock: Livestock that cannot rise from a recumbent position or that cannot walk, including, but not limited to, those with broken appendages, severed tendons or ligaments, nerve paralysis, fractured vertebral column, or metabolic conditions. This includes livestock that are non-ambulatory due to an acute injury in route to the slaughter facility as well as livestock that are non-ambulatory due to an underlying pathological condition. See Downers.

Non-native species: See Exotic species.

Non-renewable resource: A resource that cannot be replaced as it is used. Although fossil fuels, like coal and oil, are in fact fossilized biomass resources, they form at such a slow rate that, in practice, they are non-renewable. See Renewable energy resource.

Non-storage agricultural product: An agricultural product received temporarily into a warehouse for conditioning, transferring, or assembling for shipment, or lots of an agricultural product moving through a warehouse for current merchandising or milling use, against which nowarehouse receipts are issued and no storage charges assessed.

Nonagricultural substance: A substance that is not a product of agriculture, such as a mineral or a bacterial culture, that is used as an ingredient in an agricultural product.

Nonambulatory livestock: Also Non-ambulatory livestock. See Non-ambulatory disabled livestock.

Nonbasic commodity(ies): Crops for which the USDA has discretionary authority to provide price-support loans and that were not classified as basic commodities by the Agricultural Act of 1949. These crops included barley, oats, rye, grain sorghum, honey, sugar, soybeans, canola, rapeseed, flaxseed, sunflowerseed, mustard seed, seed cotton, milk, and milk products. Price-support loans for designated nonbasic commodities, such as soybeans, milk, tung nuts, sugarbeets, and sugarcane, are mandatory under permanent law.

Noncarcass merit premium: An increase in the base price of the swine offered by an individual packer or packing plant, based on any factor other than the characteristics of the carcass, if the actual amount of the premium is known before the sale and delivery of the swine.

Noncompetitive imports: Coffee, cocoa, bananas, tea, rubber, and other commodities imported to the U.S. that do not compete against domestic production.

Nonconserving use: The planting of crops for purposes other than conserving uses on the base acres “retired” for purposes of price-support eligibility.

Noncontract crops: Under provisions of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996, oilseeds and extra-long staple cotton.

Noncredit benefit(s): Farm program payments, such as disaster payments and Conservation Reserve Program payments, that are not loans. Most non-credit benefits do not need to be repaid to USDA.

Nondegradation standard: Under the Conservation Security Program, the level of measures required to adequately protect and prevent degradation of one or more natural resources, as determined by the Natural Resources Conservation Service. See Conservation security contract(s), and Conservation security plan(s).

Nonexclusive branded variety(ies); See Variety release.

Nonfarm income; Includes all income from nonfarm sources received by farm operator households. This excludes money earned from working for other producers.

Nonfat dry milk (NFDM and NDM): See Powder.

Nonfat milk solids; nonfat solids: See Solids-not-fat (SNF).

Nonfat solids price: The price per pound that is the U.S. average National Agricultural Statistics Service nonfat dry milk survey price reported by the USDA for the month, less 14 cents, then multiplied by 0.99.

Nonfed cattle: Cull cows and bulls sold for slaughter. The carcasses usually fall within the lower quality grades.

Nonforest land; Land that has never supported forests or land formerly forested where future forest use is precluded because of development for nonforest uses such as cropland, improved pasture, residential areas, and city parks.

Nongovernmental organization(s) (NGO): Includes a wide range of local organizations in countries that are recipients of U.S. foreign assistance. NGOs are primarily religious, cultural, ethnic, profit-making, or political organizations that contribute directly to development, whether or not they are legal entities. An NGO may not be a state-dominated social, economic, or political development structure.

Nongrade standards: Examples are chemical composition, moisture content, and dockage. See Grades and standards.

Nonindigenous species: See Exotic species.

Nonindustrial private forest land (NIPF): Forest land owned by a private individual, group, or corporation not involved in wood processing. In the U.S. there are 353 million acres of NIPF land owned by 10 million people.

Noninsurable crops; Crops for which crop insurance is not available. Such crops include fruits and vegetables, aquaculture, maple sap, turfgrass, and forage crops.

Noninsured (Crop Disaster) Assistance Program (NAP): For producers that suffer noninsurable crop losses, the program administered by the Farm Service Agency provides coverage similar to that provided by catastrophic coverage crop insurance. The former per-crop, 35 percent area yield threshold requirement was dropped in the Agricultural Risk Protection Act of 2000 in favor of an individual loss trigger. If the threshold loss is met, eligible producers may apply for assistance and be paid for crop yield losses in excess of 50 percent at 55 percent of the average market price. A service fee is required to be paid in the amount of the lesser of $100 per crop per county or $300 per producer per county but not to exceed $900 per producer. The fee will be waived for limited-resource producers. Payments under NAP to a single person cannot exceed $100,000 for any given crop year.

Noninsured (crop disaster) assistance program (NAP) area: Includes land affected by a natural disaster that (a) to the maximum extent possible, corresponds to the boundary of a specific natural disaster; (b) is a county or multiple contiguous counties; (c) includes an area of at least 320,000 acres oracreage having crops being produced worth in excess of $80 million per year; (d) if in the U.S., includes at least five different producers of eligible crops; (e) if outside the U.S., includes at least ten different producers of eligible crops; and (f) has suffered at least a 35 percent loss of an eligible crop. The area yield loss requirement was eliminated in the Agricultural Risk Protection Act of 2000.

Noninterest income: Any income that credit institutions earn from activities other than their core business or from their investments. This type of income is often referred to as fee income, since fees derived from fee-related services often constitute the majority of noninterest income.

Nonmarket economy (NME): Although not defined in the Trade Act of 1974, as amended, it has come to mean communist countries.

Nonmoney (farm) income: A statistical allowance used in farm income calculations to credit producers with income for the value of farm products used on the farm (instead of being sold for cash), and the rental value of farm dwellings. It assumes producers otherwise live rent-free on their farm business premises.

Nonparticipating farm(s); Under the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996, farms that did not have production flexibility contracts.

Nonpoint Source Hydrologic Unit Areas (HUA) projects: Focus on remediation of documented water-quality problems in areas where impairment of surface and groundwater quality by agricultural nonpoint source pollution is significant. Natural Resources Conservation Service, Farm Service Agency, and Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service work in cooperation with state water-quality agencies, local units of government, and private interest groups.

Nonpoint source pollution (NSP); Pollution that enters the environment from broad areas via water runoff from a field or feedlot, such as areas in which fertilizers or other chemicals have been applied or animal manure is deposited rather than from concentrated discharge points.

Nonpoint; nonpoint pollution; Nonpoint source pollution (NSP); Pollution that enters the environment from broad areas such as stormwater runoff from farm lands, forests, construction sites, and urban areas, rather than from concentrated discharge points. NSP includes runoff from fields where fertilizers or other chemicals have been applied or animal manure has been deposited. See Point source(s); point source pollution (PSP).

Nonpool plant: Any milk receiving, manufacturing, or processing plant, other than a pool plant, that is (a) a fully regulated plant under another federal milk marketing order, (b) a producer-handler plant, (c) a partially regulated distributing plant, (d) an unregulated supply plant, or (e) an exempt plant.

Nonpotable reuse: The use of reclaimed water in water supplies that are not suitable for drinking such as farm irrigation, groundwater recharge, or industrial uses.

Nonprice promotion program: Trade programs that promote foreign demand for U.S. goods. These programs target foreign consumer preferences and are not linked to export credit programs. Nonprice promotion programs provide nutritional information, recipes, services, and technical assistance to foreign consumers through in-store promotions and advertisements, trade shows, seminars, and publications. See Foreign Market Development Program (Cooperator Program) (FMD), and Market Access Program (MAP).

Nonproducer participant: A person or entity who engages in NAIS activity in a designated role where that role is not associated with a specific premises. Typical roles include AIN tag manager, AIN tag distributor, animal health official, brand inspection entity, or diagnostic laboratory.

Nonprogram acres: Cropland used in the production of a covered commodity during the 1998 through 2001 crop years that was “out of the program” and thus not receiving production flexibility contracts payments authorized by the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996. Also Wildcat acres. See Free rider.

Nonprogram crops: Crops that are not included in federal price-support programs. Nonprogram crops include potatoes, vegetables, fruits, and hay.

Nonquota peanuts: Also Over-quota peanuts. See Additionals; additional peanuts.

Nonrecourse loan(s): (1) The major instrument used by the Commodity Credit Corporation to support the price of wheat, feed grains, upland cotton, peanuts, tobacco, rice, sugar, graded wool, nongraded wool, mohair, honey, dry peas, lentils, and small chickpeas. Producers who agree to comply with each commodity program provision may pledge a quantity of the commodity as collateral and obtain a loan from the CCC. The borrower may elect either to repay the loan with interest within a specified period and regain control of the collateral commodity or default on the loan. In case of a default, the borrower forfeits, without penalty, the collateral commodity to the CCC. The loans are nonrecourse because the government has no option (or recourse) but to accept forfeiture as full satisfaction of the loan obligation, including the accumulated interest, regardless of the price of the commodity in the market at the time of default. In the case of sugar, loans are made to processors instead ofproducers. Processors are required to provide payments to producers in proportion to the amount of the loan value accounted for by the sugarbeets and sugarcane the producers deliver. (2) Price-support loans to producers (or auction marketsor marketing associations; processors in the case of sugar) enable them to hold their crops for later sale. The loans are nonrecourse because if a producer cannot profitably sell the commodity and repay the loan with interest when it matures, usually during a marketing year, the commodity for which the loan was advanced can be delivered to the government in full settlement of the loan. Alternatively, the producer can redeem the stored commodities by paying off the loan with interest. See Nonrecourse marketing assistance loans, and Sugar (price-support) program.

Nonrecourse marketing assistance loan: Under the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (Secs. 131-136), nonrecourse loans were available for sixteen loan-eligible commodities for the 1996 through 2002 crop years. Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1201), the nonrecourse marketing assistance loans program is maintained at increased rates for the sixteen crops covered under the FAIR Act, except rice (rates are frozen) and soybeans and other oilseeds (rates are lower – the rates were purposely set high under the FAIR Act because of the unavailability of production flexibility contracts to soybean and minor oilseed producers). Graded wool, nongraded wool, mohair, honey, dry peas, lentils, and small chickpeasare added as loan commodities. Also Nonrecourse loan(s).

Nonrenewable grazing permits and leases: May be issued on an annual basis to qualified applicants when forage is temporarily available, provided this use is consistent with multiple-use objectives and does not interfere with existing livestock operations on the public lands.

Nonselective herbicide: herbicide that is generally toxic to all plants treated. Some selective herbicides may become nonselective if used at high rates.

Nontarget organisms: Those plants, animals, and humans that are not intended to be controlled, injured, killed, or detrimentally affected in any way by a pesticide.

Nontariff trade barriers (NTB): Regulations, other than traditional customs duties, used by governments to restrict imports from and exports to other countries. Embargoes, import quotas, licensing, variable levies, state trading, and unnecessary or excessive labeling, health, and sanitary standards are examples of the types of nontariff trade barriers that have increased since the end of World War II, while tariff rates have declined significantly.

Nonthreshold effect; nonthreshold: The effect when the Environmental Protection Agency is unable to identify a level of exposure of a pesticide chemical residue that will not cause or contribute to a known or anticipated harm to human health.

Nontraditional crop(s): Crops not traditionally grown in an area but which may be a viable and desirable option to replace or supplement traditional crops production. Such crops in the U.S. have included shrimp, peas, horses, trees, certain fruits and vegetables,industrial crops, exotic species, and shiitake mushrooms. See Alternative crop(s).

Nonwetland: Under natural conditions, land that does not meet wetland criteria or is converted wetland.

Normal crop acreage (NCA): Under previous farm bills, the acreage on a farm normally devoted to a group of designated crops. When a set-aside program was in effect, a farm’s total planted acreage of such program crops, plus the set-aside acreage, could not exceed the normal crop acreage if the producer wished to participate in a price-support loan program or receive deficiency payments. The NCA could be used in setting allotments or quotas for the farm.

Normal farming practices: The customary and generally accepted activities, practices, and procedures that producers consistently adopt, use, or engage in the production and preparation for market of crops, livestock, and livestock products and in the production and harvesting of agricultural, agronomic, horticultural, silvicultural, and aquacultural crops and commodities.

Normal flex acres (acreage); normal flexible acres (acreage) (NFA): A provision of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990 and the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 that required a mandatory 15 percent planting flexibility for program participants. Under this provision, producers were ineligible to receive deficiency payments on 15 percent of their crop acreage base (not including any acreage removed from production under any production adjustment program). Crops on normal flex acreage were still eligible for nonrecourse loans and marketing loans. Producers were allowed to plant any permitted crop. The optional flex acres planting provision was eliminated in the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996. See Maximum flex acres (acreage); maximum flexible acres (acreage) (MFA), Optional flex acres (acreage); optional flexible acres (acreage) (OFA), Permitted crop(s), Triple base, and Triple-base plan.

Normal production: Generally, for various commodities, either the normal yield or projected farm yield for a farm multiplied by the number of acres producing such commodities.

Normal supply: For any crop year, the estimated domestic consumption of a commodity, plus the estimated exports of a commodity, plus an allowance for any carry-over.

Normal trade relations (NTR): See Most-favored nation (MFN). Normal year’s domestic consumption: Generally, the yearly average quantity of a commodity, wherever produced, that was consumed in the U.S. during either the five or ten marketing years immediately preceding the marketing year in which such consumption is determined, adjusted for current trends in such consumption.

Normal year’s domestic consumption: Generally, the yearly average quantity of a commodity, wherever produced, that was consumed in the U.S. during either the five or ten marketing years immediatley preceding the marketing year in which such consumption is determined, adjusted for current trends in such consumption.

Normal year’s exports: Generally, the yearly average quantity of the commodity produced in the U.S. that was exported from the U.S. during either five or the ten marketing years immediately preceding the marketing year in which such exports are determined, adjusted for current trends in such exports.

Normal yield: The average historical yield established for a particular farm or area. Normal yield is multiplied by the normal acreage harvested of a commodity when determining normal production. See Program yield(s).

North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA): Effective January 1, 1994. A multilateral agreement between the U.S., Mexico, and Canada to lower or eliminate trade barriers between the three countries on the trade of goods and services.

North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act (P.L. 103-182): Signed into law December 8, 1993. Legislative approval for the implementation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, which included previous agricultural trade agreements with Canada and new authority to significantly reduce agricultural trade barriers with Mexico.

Northeast Dairy Compact: See Northeast Interstate Dairy Compact.

Northeast Interstate Dairy Compact: As consented to by the federal government in the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (Sec. 147), the Compact included Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The Compact allowed these New England states to regulate, collectively, the minimum price for fluid milk. The Compact price added to and did not replace federal supports. The Compact compensated the Commodity Credit Corporation for federal milk and milk product purchases resulting from the Compact price adjustment and its effect on production. Federal consent for the Compact was scheduled to terminate upon the implementation of the dairy pricing and federal milk marketing order consolidation and reforms. Congress extended the authority for the Compact until September 30, 2001. In May 2000, the Supreme Court refused to hear a challenge to the constitutionality of the Compact. The Compact was not reauthorized in the Farm Security and Rural Investment of 2002; however, Congress did adopt the National Dairy Market Loss Payment Program as a replacement.

Northern Europe; Northern Europe price (NE): The average price of the lowest-priced growths of cotton from five foreign countries delivered to the same location. The price is used for determining the adjusted world price for cotton. See Adjusted world price (cotton), Step 1 adjustment (cotton), and U.S. Northern Europe (USNE).

Northern Great Plains Regional Authority: Authorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 6028) to plan and fund development strategies in Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The Authority may approve grants to states and public and nonprofit entities for projects including transportation and telecommunication infrastructure projects, business development and entrepreneurship, and job training.

NOSB: National Organic Standards Board

Notification process: The process by which member countries report information to the World Trade Organization on commitments, changes in policies, and other related matters, as required by the various agreements.

Novel food(s): Genetically modified food and other foods and food ingredients consisting of or isolated from microorganisms, fungi, algae, plants or animals, or that have been obtained through new processes.

Noxious weed(s): Any living stage (including seeds and reproductive parts) of a parasitic or other plant of a kind that (a) is of foreign origin, (b) is new to or not widely prevalent in the U.S., and (c) can directly or indirectly injure crops, other useful plants, livestock, poultry, irrigation, forage, navigation, fish and wildlife resources, endangered species, or the public health. Unlike native species, there are no native insects, fungi, or diseases to control their growth and spread in this country. The USDA may provide cost-sharing assistance to state and local agencies to manage noxious weeds in an area, if a majority of the landowners in that area agree to participate in a noxious weed management program. See Exotic weed(s), and Undesirable plant species.

NPDES: National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

NPDES permit: A permit required by the Clean Water Act of 1972 that contains limits on what one can discharge into the water of the United States, monitoring and reporting requirements, and other provisions to ensure that a discharge does not hurt water quality or human health. See National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).

NPE: Nutrition Program for the Elderly

NPIP: National Poultry Improvement Plan

NPO: National Partnership Office

NPO: National Partnership Office

NPPC: National Pork Producers Council

NRCS: Natural Resources Conservation Service

NRDC: National Rural Development Council

NRDP: National Rural Development Partnership

NRECA: National Rural Electric Cooperative Association

NRI: National Research Initiative (competitive grants program)

NRI: National Resources Inventory

NRSP-7: National Research Support Project No. 7

NRSP-7: National Research Support Project No. 7

NRSP-7: National Research Support Project No. 7. See Minor-use animal drug program.

NSIP: Nutrition Services Incentive Program

NSLP: National School Lunch Program

NSP: Nonpoint source pollution

NSTC: National Science and Technology Council

nsurance unit(s): For crop insurance purposes, each parcel of land that is insured independently of other parcels. One farming operation may have several insurance units. See Basic unit(s), Enterprise unit(s), Optional unit(s), and Whole farm unit(s).

NTB: Nontariff trade barriers

nterest buy-down: A plan to assist people and firms in financial difficulty with large debts. The lender may reduce the interest rate and the government will pay part of the interest cost so that total interest payments are reduced. It may be combined with a program to get lenders to scale down the size of the debt. Both interest buy-down and farm debt adjustment were used to help U.S. producers in the 1930s, and again in a more limited program in the 1980s and 1990s.

nterregional research project No. 4 (IR-4): See IR-4, and Pesticide clearance.

NTF: National Turkey Federation

NTR: Normal trade relations

Nucleic acid (based) assay(s): rapid assay that uses the unique genetic materials of the cells to detect a pathogen.

Nucleotide(s): A compound made up of these three components – a sugar, phosphate, and a nitrogen-containing base – found as individual molecules or as many nucleotides linked together in a chain (nucleic acid such as DNA). Nucleotides aid in cellular energy transport and transformations and in enzyme regulation.

Nuisance: (1) The legal claim that agricultural areas interfere with the use and quiet enjoyment of neighboring property because of noise, odor, or agricultural activity. (2) Mountain lions, wolves, coyotes, bobcats, prairie dogs, gophers, ground squirrels, jack rabbits, brown tree snakes, predatory birds, and other birds and animals injurious to agriculture, horticulture, forestry, animal husbandry, wild game animals, fur-bearing animals, and birds.

Numerical grades: Federal quality grade standards of U.S. 1 through U.S. 2 for flaxseed and sunflowerseed; U.S. 1 through U.S. 3 for canola; U.S. 1 through U.S. 4 for oats, rye, soybeans, triticale, and grain sorghum; U.S. 1 through U.S. 5 for barley, corn, and wheat; U.S. 1 through U.S. 6 for rice; and one grade for mixed grains. In addition, there are special grades and sample grades.

Nurse female: A lactating female that, having had all or part of her own litter weaned, suckles pigs farrowed by other breeding females.

Nurse litter (swine): Preweaned pigs that are suckling a nurse female. See Birth litter (swine), and Wean litter (swine).

Nursery crop(s); Crops grown for sale, including fruit and other trees, shrubs, ground covers, and vines, floral crops (bedding, foliage, and potted flowering plants; cut flowers and florist greens), turfgrass or sod, vegetable and flower seeds, dry bulbs, dry corms, dry rhizomes, dry tubers, cut Christmas trees harvested, greenhouse vegetables, and mushrooms. Also Greenhouse crop(s). See Floral crops.

Nursery crop(s); greenhouse crop(s): Crops grown for sale, including fruit and other trees, shrubs, ground covers and vines, floral crops (bedding, foliage, potted flowering plants, cut flowers and florist greens), turfgrass or sod, vegetable and flower seeds, dry bulbs, dry corms, dry rhizomes, dry tubers, cut Christmas trees harvested, greenhouse vegetables, and mushrooms. Also Greenhouse crop(s). See Floral crops.

Nursery pig(s): Weaned pigs that have been placed in a nursery facility from a farrowing unit.

Nursery stock: Field-grown florists’ stock, trees, shrubs, vines, cuttings, grafts, scions, buds, fruit pits, and other seeds of fruit and ornamental trees or shrubs. It also includes other plants and plant products for propagation except field, vegetable, and flower seeds, bedding plants, and other herbaceous plants, bulbs, and roots.

Nursery(ies): (1) A facility dedicated to growing plants and trees. (2) A building where pigs, ages three to four weeks, are taken when separated from their mother after weaning and are raised to 60 to 80 pounds.

Nutraceutical(s): Substances in or parts of a food that may be considered to provide medical or health benefits beyond basic nutrition including disease prevention. See Functional foods.

Nutrient bank(ing): The collection and storage of animal waste in impacted watersheds for eventual distribution outside the watershed for the purpose of enhancing the health and viability of the watershed. The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7411) authorized the USDA to evaluate the effectiveness of nutrient banking. See Litter bank.

Nutrient density: The amount of essential nutrients relative to the number of calories in a given amount of food.

Nutrient management: (1) The managing of the amount, form, placement, and timing of applications of plant nutrients. (2) The collection, storage, removal, and distribution of wastewater and manure from animal production facilities.

Nutrient Management Plan (NMP): A plan that includes (a) aerial site photographs or maps and soil maps showing the location of animal waste application fields and the location of all nearby streams, lakes, wetlands, and known sinkholes; (b) current and planned crop production sequences and rotations; (c) identification of nonapplication buffer strips that are sufficient to protect water quality around the application sites; (d) soil test results for phosphorus and potassium for application sites; (e) a nitrogen budget for application fields that accounts for all applied sources and realistic yield expectations; (f) proposed application methods and schedules; and (g) a dead animal disposal method.

Nutrient Management Research and Extension Initiative (7 U.S.C. § 5925a): Under authority of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (Sec. 1672A, as amended), the USDA may make research and extension grants for the purposes of (a) identifying, evaluating, and demonstrating innovative technologies for animal waste management and related air quality management and odor control; (b) investigating the unique microbiology of specific animal wastes, such as swine waste, to develop improved methods to effectively manage air and water quality; (c) conducting information workshops to disseminate the results of the research; (d) investigating the impact on aquatic food webs, especially commercially important aquatic species and their habitats, of microorganisms of the genus Pfiesteria and other microorganisms that are a threat to human or animal health; (e) identifying, evaluating, and demonstrating innovative technologies to be used for animal waste management (including odor control) in rural areas adjacent to suburban or urban areas in connection with waste management activities undertaken in suburban or urban areas; (f) maximizing nutrition management for livestock while limiting risks, such as mineral bypass, associated with livestock feeding practices; and (g) finding innovative methods and technologies for economic use or disposal of animal waste. The initiative was reauthorized through FY2007 by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7120).

Nutrient pollution: The contamination of water resources by excessive inputs of nutrients. Excess algal production is a major concern.

Nutrient(s): Any substance, assimilated by living things, that promotes growth. Plant nutrients are mainly nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, sulfur, iron, manganese, copper, boron, and zinc (obtained from the soil) and carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen (obtained from the air and water). The term is often applied to nitrogen and phosphorus in wastewater but also applies to other essential and trace elements.

Nutrition assistance: See Nutrition assistance programs.

Nutrition assistance programs: Food and Nutrition Service programs including food stamps, child nutrition programs, Team Nutrition, WIC, Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program, and food distribution.

Nutrition Education and Training (NET): Provides funds to state agencies for the development of comprehensive nutrition education and information programs for children participating in or eligible for the National School Lunch Program and related child nutrition programs. Program goals include instruction of educators and students in the fundamentals of nutrition, training of food service personnel in food service management and nutrition, and the building of good nutrition habits.

Nutrition Education Program; See Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP).

Nutrition Information and Awareness Pilot Program: The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 4403) authorizes the USDA to establish a pilot program to increase the domestic consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables in not more than five states for a period not to exceed four years for each participating state. If established, the program shall provide funds to states to provide eligible public and private sector operations with cost-share assistance to carry out demonstration projects to increase fruit and vegetable consumption and convey related health promotion messages.

Nutrition Initiative: See Human Nutrition Initiative.

Nutrition Program for the Elderly (NPE): See Nutrition Services Incentive Program (NSIP).

Nutrition Services Incentive Program (NSIP): Formerly the Nutrition Program for the Elderly, this program provides cash and commodities to states for distribution to local organizations that prepare meals served to the elderly in congregate settings or in their homes. Goals of this program are to promote good health through nutrition assistance and to reduce the isolation of the elderly.

Nutrition(al) security: The appropriate quantity and combination of food, nutrition, health services, and care-takers’ time needed to ensure adequate nutritional status for an active and healthy life at all times for all people.

Nutritionist: One who studies nutrients required for desired growth and reproduction. In plants it is commonly called the study of soil fertility.

NVSL: National Veterinary Services Laboratories

NWI: National Wetlands Inventory

NWR: NOAA weather radio