October 2014 WG Buyers Guide Edition

I am a health insurance agent and have a client, ABC Farms, that has a health benefit plan with Western Growers Assurance Trust.  ABC Farms has operations in the Central Valley of California and in Yuma, AZ, and has 500 employees.  In Yuma, the employer hires about 50 employees just for the seasonal winter vegetable harvest, which lasts four months.  Is ABC Farms required to provide coverage under Obamacare to the seasonal Yuma hires?  And what if some of the seasonal employees travel to the Central Valley and continue working after the winter season concludes?

A new U.S. corrugated industry life cycle assessment (LCA) study shows a significant 32 percent reduction per unit in the industry’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions between 2006 and 2010.  Additionally, the industry improved in other environmental impact indicators.  Effects of nutrient releases on receiving waters and soils (eutrophication) decreased by 22 percent and effects of particulate matter emissions (respiratory effects) decreased by 14 percent.

With the enactment of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) in 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is required to take a risk-based approach to food safety and therefore change existing paradigms in several areas, one of them is produce sampling and testing.  It is moving toward a more structured framework for routine and research purposes.

Goods and services provided by the many companies that operate within the agricultural sector are a very important part of the specialty crop industry.  Though not actually producing the crops, these firms provide the tools necessary to do that job.  At Western Growers, these Associate Members collectively are a key component of the organization.  They deserve your support!

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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.