Article 31B.

Vegetable Plant Law.

106-284.14.  Title.

This Article shall be known as the "Vegetable Plant Law." (1959, c. 91, s. 1.)

 

106-284.15.  Purpose of Article.

The purpose of this Article is to improve vegetable production in North Carolina and to enable vegetable producers to secure vegetable plants for transplanting that are free from diseases  and insects, and in order to prevent the spread of diseases and insects affecting the future stability of the vegetable industry and the general welfare of the public. (1959, c. 91, s. 2; 1973, c. 1370, s. 1.)

 

106-284.16.  Definitions.

For the purpose of this Article, the following terms shall be construed respectively to mean:

(1)        "Certified vegetable plants for transplanting" shall mean plants which have been tagged or labeled so as to indicate that such plants have been inspected by an authorized agent of an officially recognized State inspecting or certifying agency of some state, and found to conform to the appropriate standards set by the North Carolina Board of Agriculture.

(2)        "Vegetable plants" shall mean such plants as asparagus, pepper, eggplant, sweet potato, onion, cabbage and other cole crops, tomato plants, white seed potatoes and onion sets intended for transplanting purposes and such other vegetable plants intended for transplanting purposes as the North Carolina Board of Agriculture may designate by regulation in order to protect the vegetable industry.

(3)        As applied to vegetable plants "standards" include the qualities of color, freshness, firmness, strength, straightness, unbroken and undamaged condition, uniformity of size, and freedom from injurious insects, diseases, nematodes, snails, and other pests and means the standards with respect thereto as established and fixed in regulations adopted by the North Carolina Board of Agriculture. (1959, c. 91, s. 3; 1973, c. 1370, s. 2.)

 

106-284.17.  Unlawful to sell plants not up to standard and not appropriately tagged or labeled.

It shall be unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to pack for sale, offer or expose for sale, or ship into this State any vegetable plants which do not meet the appropriate standards as set by the North Carolina Board of Agriculture and which have not been appropriately tagged or labeled as certified vegetable plants for transplanting. (1959, c. 91, s. 4; 1973, c. 1370, s. 3.)

 

106-284.18.  Rules and regulations.

The State Board of Agriculture is hereby authorized to adopt reasonable rules and regulations to carry out the intent, purposes and provisions of this Article. (1959, c. 91, s. 5; 1973, c.  1370, s. 4.)

 

106-284.19.  Inspection; interference with inspectors; "stop-sale" notice.

To enforce the provisions of this Article effectively, the Commissioner of Agriculture and his duly authorized agents are authorized to inspect vegetable plants, and may enter any place of business, warehouse, common carrier or other places where such vegetable plants are stored or being held, for the purpose of making such an inspection; and it shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation in custody of such vegetable plants or of the place in which the same are held to interfere with the Commissioner or his duly authorized agents in making such inspections. When the Commissioner or his authorized inspectors find vegetable plants being held, offered or exposed for sale in violation of any of the provisions of this Article or any rule or regulation adopted pursuant thereto, he may issue a "stop-sale notice" to the owner or custodian of any such vegetable plants and shall tag such plants as are in violation. It shall be unlawful for anyone after notice or receipt of such "stop-sale notice" to remove such notice from plants or from any location to which attached; or to plant, sell, give away, move or exchange for transplanting purposes any plants in respect to which such notice has been issued unless and until so authorized by the Commissioner or his agent or a court of competent jurisdiction. (1959, c. 91, s. 6; 1973, c. 1370, s. 5.)

 

106-284.20.  Interference with Commissioner, etc., or other violation a misdemeanor; penalties.

If anyone shall interfere with or attempt to interfere with the Commissioner or any of his agents, while engaged in the performance of his duties under this law or shall violate any provision of this law or any rule or regulation of the Board of Agriculture adopted pursuant to this law, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. Each day's violation shall constitute a separate offense. (1959, c. 91, s. 7; 1973, c. 1370, s. 6; 1993, c. 539, s. 759; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c).)

 

106-284.21.  Authority to permit sale of substandard plants.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this Article, the Commissioner of Agriculture is authorized when the public necessity, welfare, economy, or any emergency situation requires it, to permit for such periods of time as, in his discretion may seem necessary, the sale of vegetable plants for transplanting purposes which do not meet the standards referred to in G.S. 106-284.16. (1959, c. 91, s. 8.)

 

106-284.22.  When Article not applicable.

The provisions of this Article shall not apply:

(1)        To the sale by a grower or retail merchant of vegetable plants  grown within this State when such sale is made for home or garden or any noncommercial use; provided, however, the provisions shall apply to such sale when such plants are found to be infested with pests so that the exposure for sale or planting is deemed by the Commissioner or his agent to be a hazard to the commercial vegetable industry of North Carolina.

(2)        To the sale of vegetable plants for commercial transplanting  purposes in this State when grown within this State and sold by a plant producer to a planter having personal knowledge of the conditions under which such vegetable plants were grown or produced provided that such plants are transplanted within a 30-mile radius at which they were grown; but also provided, however, the provisions shall apply to such sale when such plants are found to be infested with pests so that the exposure for sale or planting is deemed by the Commissioner or his agent to be a hazard to the commercial vegetable industry of North Carolina. (1959, c. 91, s. 9; 1973, c. 1370, s. 7.)

 

106-284.23.  Not set out.

 

106-284.24 through 106-284.29.  Reserved for future codification purposes.