USDA BioPreferred® Program 2022 Product Audit Overview

What Is the Audit Process?

The BioPreferred Program routinely audits the biobased products that our Program qualifies (for mandatory Federal purchasing) and certifies (through the voluntary labeling initiative with third-party biobased content testing). Keeping the company, contact, and product information current for participating companies is important for the participants, USDA, and to maintain the credibility of the BioPreferred Program.

Additionally, we're taking this opportunity to have participants review and sign the updated Participant Agreement if they haven't already done so. The agreement was recently updated to reflect the mission and goals of the BioPreferred Program's voluntary labeling initiative more accurately, as well as to include USDA's current addresses and contact information. The requirements and expectations of participants set forth in the agreement have not changed. The updated Participant Agreement can be viewed by logging into your account on the BioPreferred Program's website, www.biopreferred.gov.

Helpful Video Tutorial

When you are ready to complete the audit, please watch the helpful 5 minute how-to video at the end of this page. This video will walk you through the actions required to complete the audit.

Who Needs to Participate?

All Program participants, including manufacturers and distributors of biobased materials, biochemicals, and finished biobased products.

Some companies manufacture an upstream biobased material or chemical or a finished product that does not fit into one of the 139 product categories qualified for mandatory Federal purchasing. These products are certified-only - they have gone through the BioPreferred Program's certification process, including third-party biobased content testing and validation, to earn the USDA Certified Biobased Product Label. The tested biobased contents of these products appear on their certification labels.

Some companies manufacture a finished product in one of the 139 product categories qualified for mandatory Federal purchasing. These products are called qualified-only because they fall within a mandatory Federal purchasing category but have not gone through the BioPreferred Program's certification process, including third-party biobased content testing and validation. These manufacturers are not eligible to use a certification label.

Want to change your qualified-only product to a qualified/certified product? Complete this year's audit process, then follow this procedure to initiate an application for certification!

Some companies manufacture a finished product in one of the 139 product categories qualified for mandatory Federal purchasing AND have gone through the BioPreferred Program's certification process, including third-party biobased content testing and validation, to earn the USDA Certified Biobased Product Label. The tested biobased contents of these products appear on their certification labels.

BioPreferred Program sample certification label.

The Program's audit process applies to all manufacturers and vendors the Program recognizes -- all companies that are BioPreferred Program participants.

When Will the Audit Take Place?

This year's auditing process will begin in April 2022 and the Program expects that it will be completed by June 2022.

What Happens if Participants Don't Respond?

All BioPreferred Program participants are subject to oversight and monitoring and required to keep their information current per the Program guidelines. Participants that do not respond to the audit will have a bold red disclaimer added to their product listings in the BioPreferred Program's database and online catalog noting that the products were not updated during the 2022 audit.

Audit Video Tutorial

This video will walk you through the actions required to sign the updated Participant Agreement and complete the audit.