In 2018 California Citrus Mutual anticipates a major onslaught of regulatory proposals emanating from Sacramento agencies.  For many agency leaders, their tenure expires with an Administration change.  For the Governor, this year represents the last year he can create his legacy in a myriad of areas.  At the federal level, a similar effort will take place but the assumption is that most recommendations will be viewed positively.

However, this will create a hue and cry from those in opposition thus creating a need for industry response.  This climate change in both California and Washington, D.C. is the foundation for our 2018 Citrus Showcase.  Our luncheon keynote speaker is Ray Starling from the Executive Office of the President and the first agricultural appointee in the Trump Administration.  He is at the forefront of determining what the Administration is doing and going to do on issues affecting producers of food and fiber.

Our colleagues at the Citrus Research Board recognize the stresses growers face thwarting the pressures of the Asian Citrus Psyllid, all the while facing threats from activists and customers regarding the use of crop protection tools.  Their workshop, The Latest Available Strategies for Managing ACP in Your Orchards will arm growers with the foundation necessary to protect groves while giving CRB and CCM ammunition to offset activist and regulatory challenges. Dr.  Beth Grafton Cardwell will provide the program.

Food Safety rules, regulations, and demands have become a major burden for the industry.  The customer base and regulatory bodies have created a conflicting body of needs that requires audits and paper for an industry that is 99% protective against food safety challenges without the rules.  It appears that the state and federal government are now on the same page which should reduce the pressures for marketers, shippers, and growers.  How this will be achieved is the subject for a second workshop.

All Things Water is workshop number three.  Jason Phillips, Friant Water Authority CEO will headline this program as he discusses efforts to create more storage, the latest bond measure, and corrective measures being taken to repair subsidence in the canal.  And then there is ground water and all the pressures associated with accessing irrigation and frost protection water.  This is coming at the industry from a number of agencies, primarily the State Water Resources Control Board and the Regional Water Board, who are also at odds.

So who is on first and what game will growers be required to play, whether it is the Irrigated Land Management Program, SMGA, or another nefarious approach impacting a grower’s ability to produce food.  This workshop will also feature a CCM spokesperson defining how your organization is engaged with the agencies to protect your right to farm.

Once again we are pleased to report that the exhibit hall is sold out and the passage ways will be filled with exhibitors and supporters of our industry.  The largest industry educational forum will have more opportunities to learn and network.  CCM staff and directors will be on hand to address thoughts and concerns.  Friends and neighbors will be in workshop rooms and on the exhibit floor to exchange thoughts.  It’s all about you, the grower and a member of the nation’s number one fresh citrus producing industry.  It’s all about you and your ability to farm in an economically viable climate.  It’s all about you and a day to learn, listen and exchange thoughts on dynamics affecting your industry.

Join us for the 25th Annual Citrus Showcase on March 8th, 2018. Doors open at 7:30 a.m., and the first workshop begins at 8:00 a.m. There is no cost to attend the Showcase. Lunch tickets can be purchased for $40 per person by contacting CCM at 559-592-3790. Reserved tables of eight and ten are available.

The Citrus Showcase is brought to you by California Citrus Mutual with support from 2,4-D Task Force; Accu-Label International; Crop Science, a Division of Bayer; Dow AgroSciences; Farm Credit; Fruit Growers Supply; Giffin-Parker Insurance Brokers; Pace International; Sinclair Systems International; Suterra; Syngenta; and Valent.