National Membership

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

This past Sunday, March 16, 2014, The Sacramento Bee published the following joint op-ed submitted by Western Growers President and CEO Tom Nassif and General Counsel and Executive Vice President, Microsoft, Legal and Corporate Affairs, Brad Smith, on the need for immigration reform for both of our industries.  In an effort to continue our efforts to move immigration reform forward in the House, Western Growers is sending this piece to every California House office and to select Arizona House offices.

Ken Barbic

The March 2014 edition of the WG&S Magazine is in the mail.  Here’s a preview of some of the stories you will see:  

Cover Story

Transportation Benefits:  WG/CHR Transportation Program Continues to Yield Rewards

Unit Train: New Service to Connect SJV with Chicago

President’s Notes

The Rainmaker – Waiting for God’s blessings doesn’t mean we should sit idle while we wait.

Member Profile

Harold Weisfeld -- L.A. Broker Continues Daily Work at 84

Jeff Janas

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) posted its interim final rule regarding the handling of retaliation complaints under the whistleblower provisions of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Section 402 of the FSMA, which applies to an “entity engaged in the manufacture, processing, packing, transporting, distribution, reception, holding, or importation of food” protects workers who report or testify about food safety concerns against retaliation and ensures food safety concerns raised by employees are taken seriously.      

Jason Resnick

In 2007, Scientific Certification Systems sponsored a Draft Trial Standard for Agricultural Sustainability through the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).  This Draft Trial Standard was hotly debated and viewed by many as unworkable.  In fairly short order, the Leonardo Group (a charitable organization that facilitates the development of national voluntary standards) announced the development of a multi-stakeholder process to develop a proposed National Standard for Agricultural Sustainability. 

Hank Giclas

California Republicans succeeded in passing H.R. 3964 (Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley Emergency Water Delivery Act), a measure sponsored by Congressman David Valadao (R-Hanford), largely along party lines with a vote of 229-191. Valadao said, “While Californians are dealing with the brunt of the water shortage, this issue affects the entire country. 

Dennis Nuxoll

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