Mango assessments used for promotion and research efforts are going up for the first time since 2005.

Beginning Sept. 1, first handlers and importers of mangoes will pay one-fourth cent more per pound for their mandated assessments for the Mango Promotion, Research and Information Order.

Mango assessment to go up by one-fourth cent per poundThe initial assessment rate of one-half cent per pound on fresh mangoes was set at the beginning of the National Mango Board in 2005. The board approved a motion in 2009 that proposed to raise the assessment to three-fourths of a cent per pound and the U.S. Department of Agriculture approved it April 12.

“We are very pleased with the exceeding results achieved thus far and look forward to the continued success the National Mango Board brings to the entire mango industry. The additional resources will allow the NMB to increase their efforts in research and marketing, while bringing the industry members together,” Ronnie Cohen, chairman of the National Mango Board, said in a news release.

First handlers and importers of mangoes of 500,000 pounds or more annually are required to pay the assessment.

The USDA that fewer than five first handlers and 193 importers are subject to assessment under the Mango Promotion, Research and Information Order.

Assessments currently generate about $3.4 million in annual revenue, and the increase is expected to add $1.6 million per year to the group’s budget.

“Although it has been a long and methodical process, we take the responsibility of effectively investing the industry’s additional resources very seriously,” William Watson, executive director of the National Mango Board, said in the release.

The USDA received 20 comments about the increase, with 17 in favor.

One supporter said that the assessment increase was favored by mango organizations in Mexico, Peru, Guatemala, Haiti, Ecuador and Brazil. One comment opposed to the increase said the additional cost would harm importers coping with high freight rates and unfavorable currency exchange rates.