During the Emmett J. Vaughan Agribusiness Conference in Sacramento this week, attendees were informed that the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) is expiring at the end of 2014. Many at the conference were not aware that TRIA was set to expire this year.   If not renewed by Congress, TRIA’s absence could create higher costs for policyholders and leave many without coverage for terrorist acts.


Greg Nelson

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently announced that it is now accepting nominations to for qualified individuals to serve on the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB).  USDA is seeking to fill four vacancies that currently exist on the Board.  NOSB members are appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture to five year terms.  The terms of each of these appointments will run from January 2015 until January 2020. USDA one-page Call for Nominations flyer with more detailed information about the type of nominations they are seeking, the criteria used to consider nominees and the duties of board members.

Matt McInerney

On Wednesday March 26, Western Growers will conduct a Lunch & Learn webinar updating the industry on the use of robotics for growing and harvesting specialty crops. 

This webinar will provide a brief overview of the current status of robotics in our industry and will highlight the causes of rapid automation during growing activities as well as the future, economic factors and limitations of robotic harvesting. A few examples of technologies currently used will be shared, including a lettuce thinner, intelligent grapevine pruner and a robotic harvester being used for strawberries. Speakers include Tony Koselka, founder of Vision Robotics, and Joseph S. Wickham, founder of Robotic Harvesting LLC.

Sonia Salas


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