Members of the Western Growers Board of Directors convened this week in Orange County under the leadership of Chairman Bruce Taylor to deliberate the top issues affecting the industry. High on the list of issues discussed were the drought and regulatory restrictions on water supply, food safety, labor union activities and immigration reform.  Several standing committees featured guest speakers.  Dr. Jay Famiglietti, a senior water cycle scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and David Orth, general manager of the Kings River Conservation District, presented to the Water Committee; Amy Wolfe, president and CEO of AgSafe, presented to the Labor Committee; and Dr. Jerry Baron, executive director of IR-4 presented to the Food Safety, Science & Technology Committee. 

Dave Puglia

Following the lead of counterparts in Florida and Texas, a program outlining citrus psyllid treatment strategies has been developed for citrus growers in California’s Central Valley. According to The Grower, three meetings scheduled for next week will give producers the opportunity to learn more about combatting the dreaded Asian citrus psyllid and the deadly greening disease it carries.

Ken Gilliland

The battle against the Asian citrus psyllid has taken place primarily in California backyards – until recently. A rise in commercial citrus psyllid detections means that all industry members play an increasingly crucial role in preventing the spread of an insect that carries the devastating Huanglongbing disease. Farm labor contractors, crew bosses, harvesters and other field workers can take several precautions to ensure the psyllid doesn’t spread from one citrus grove to another.

Ken Gilliland

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Crop Protection

Western Growers is engaged in the defense of critical crop protection tools and remains active at the federal, state and local levels.  When restrictions are necessary, we work with regulators to ensure they are based on science and that they protect public health without diminishing efficacy in the field. This marriage of science and policy is where Advocacy and Science & Technology units at Western Growers come together for the benefit of our members.

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