The Western Growers Board of Directors wrapped up a productive week in Washington Thursday. Members of the group, led by WG Chairman Steve Barnard and CEO and President Tom Nassif, focused their energy on immigration reform, farm bill issues and food safety regulations.
Meetings on these topics were wide ranging, and the group had good discussions with members on both sides of the aisle in both the House and Senate. There is still a long road ahead with immigration reform as discussion made clear. Indeed, the Senate will attempt to pass a bill next month and the House must pass its own bill to get to the conference committee where even more changes can be debated and made. Members of the group made it very clear the critical importance of reform being passed now.
The group also had the opportunity to engage on farm bill priorities, where they applauded Members of Congress on the funding levels for specialty crop block grants, research and development funding as well as pest and disease funding. Finally, members expressed support for fresh produce being the focus in the school snack program and ensuring that future crop insurance policies are most useful to our industry.
The group also engaged with members of the Administration to air out concerns on immigration, and participated in discussion on pending food safety regulations.
Stay tuned to future editions of Spotlight as we continue to follow immigration reform through Congress.
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