Office of the Deputy Administrator
The Office of the Deputy Administrator (ODA) provides leadership and direction for biotechnology regulatory activities in APHIS, overseeing each program within BRS. Our ODA office includes four support service groups: Communications, Intergovernmental Operations, Policy, Program, and International Collaboration, and Resource Management Services.
Biotechnology Risk Analysis Programs
The Biotechnology Risk Analysis Programs (BRAP) include the Plants Branch and the Plant Pests and Protectants Branch. Together, these branches address potential plant pest risk and environmental impacts of certain genetically engineered organisms on the human environment by conducting risk assessments and environmental assessments of these products. BRAP has experts in scientific fields (e.g., plant pathology, botany, animal science, entomology, virology, ecology, environmental science, molecular biology, plant breeding, weed ecology, and biochemistry) who review permit and notifications applications, petitions for deregulation, Am I Regulated (AIR) inquiries, potential permit infractions, and proposed regulatory changes. BRAP experts also answer stakeholder queries regarding the USDA biotechnology regulations.
Regulatory Operations Programs
The Biotechnology Regulatory Services (BRS) Regulatory Operations Programs includes three branches: the Eastern Compliance Assurance Branch, the Western Compliance Assurance Branch, and the Compliance Evaluation and Enforcement Branch. Collectively, these branches ensure compliance with APHIS regulations (7 CFR part 340) by directing compliance inspections, evaluating and responding to noncompliance incidents, and overseeing reports submitted in connection with notifications and permits, which can include planting reports and field test reports, among others.