How We Grow

2021 Jan/Feb How We Grow

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FROM LEADERSHIP With the remarkable 2020 behind us and a promising 2021 ahead, I wanted to share with you my thoughts for ensuring this year contributes greatly to the vision and mission of our industry. I appreciate all that you, your business and your families did to see us through the very difficult past ten months. In the months and years ahead, I strongly encourage you to proactively "Join the Journey" – the theme of The Almond Conference in December – towards the realization of our vision: Almonds make life better by what we grow and how we grow. As Board Chair Kent Stenderup outlined in the annual State of the Industry address, we will accomplish this vision through leadership in strategic market development, leadership in innovative research and leadership in the adoption of industry best practices. Individually, you can play a vital role through your involvement with the Almond Board of California (ABC) and adopting these best practices in your orchards and processing plants. We are a growing specialty crop industry which is in the process of setting the next production milestone of three billion pounds. At the outset of 2021 we find ourselves with a unified set of priorities towards the evolution of our product's relevancy with customers and consumers around the world based on the phenomenal health halo we have created around what we grow and the industry's reputation of how we grow almonds in the State of California. We also find ourselves making great progress toward attaining the Almond Orchard 2025 Goals and rapidly escalating industry participation in the California Almond Sustainability Program (CASP). In joining the journey, growers can use the learnings from CASP and ABC research to improve their water use efficiency, reduce harvest dust, employ additional environmentally friendly pest management tools and drive towards optimal uses for orchard biomass, such as Whole Orchard Recycling. Over the past 70 years of its existence, ABC has served as a platform where the industry can come together and collectively do great work. The value of this platform has never been greater than it is today and will be as we navigate the industry's challenges and opportunities. I cannot impress upon you enough the need to take CASP to the next level. CASP is not an audit, nor is it a certification program or a means for ABC to tell you how to farm. CASP is a self-assessment tool that assists your understanding of how your farming practices compare to best practices, helping you improve efficiencies. CASP also aggregates anonymous, individual grower information that is invaluable in determining how well we are trending toward the attainment of the 2025 Goals as well as providing fact-based information about how we farm, credibly building our industry's reputation around the world. I'm very optimistic about this new year and how our industry will perform over the next twelve months. I encourage you to "Join the Journey" by increasing your involvement with ABC, participating in CASP and contributing to the attainment of the 2025 Goals. We can accomplish great things when we share vision, mission and purpose. Like a train heading down the tracks, you can come along for as much of the journey as you like but, collectively, we will reach our destination. Richard Waycott President and CEO Almond Board of California Watch the State of the Industry address and access all sessions and presentations from TAC 2020: 1

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