On October 10th, Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation that provides certain employers of piece-rate employees, with a safe harbor against pending or potential class action lawsuits for uncompensated non-productive time (NPT) and rest and recovery periods. The bill, AB 1513, codifies Gonzalez v. Downtown LA Motors and Bluford v. Safeway -- effective January 1, 2016.  These cases require employers to pay piece-rate employees for rest and recovery periods (and all other periods of “nonproductive” time) separately from (and in addition to) their piece-rate compensation.

As reported in The Packer and other industry outlets, Ocean Mist Farms announced that Joe Pezzini will succeed Ed Boutonnet as president and CEO of the Castroville-based grower-shipper. The leadership transition will take place over the next year. Pezzini joined Ocean Mist in 1983, was promoted to Vice President of Operations in 2001, and became the company’s Chief Operating Officer in 2009.

Jeff Janas

Yesterday, U.S. trade negotiators announced that an agreement had been reached with 11 Pacific Rim nations on the Tran Pacific Partnership (TPP), a trade deal expected to increase market opportunities for agricultural products, including specialty crops. Western Growers’ president and CEO Tom Nassif, issued a statement to the media congratulating negotiators for reaching the deal.

Nassif’s statement read as follows:

Jeff Janas


Join Western Growers

Western Growers members care deeply for the food they grow, the land they sustain, the people they employ, and the community in which they live.