How We Grow

2021 Sept/Oct How We Grow

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What I have learned is if you want to be more successful, the first thing you consider is where are the greatest and strongest areas within that business currently and over the recent past. Then you focus efforts in that area. The way you do that is by taking a candid, open and challenging look at the entire business. How do we redirect resources from one area to put it into the area where you get the most bang for your buck? That is my basic philosophy of business, entity and even personal success and the philosophy I hope to bring to the Board. What do you most respect or appreciate about the Almond Industry? Joe: We're growing a healthy product. I get to see the power of this in my work within ingredients and on the cutting edge of product development and that's exciting for me. As we grow as an industry and our customer base gets more involved in knowing where their product comes from, it's important to leverage this fact. I believe we should be embracing questions because we have every right as an industry to be proud of what we are doing. As a family farm I am extremely proud of what I do. I'm extremely proud of what my brothers do, what my dad has done and what my grandfather has done. When you're taking care of a piece of land that has been in your family for seven or eight decades, that's amazing. I want to be able to share that story with customers and show them that farmers are doing things right. It's sharing that story and being proud of what you're doing, but then also having a willingness to learn and adapt, that will ensure our right to farm. I think that's been what my family has embraced since the inception of our farm. Bob: First, it's the people in the industry. Someone who was born and raised into the almond industry should thank their parents and their family, because that is an incredible thing. I was in my 30s when I got into the industry, and then in my 40s when I got into the trade side. I have a different perspective as far as the people and community of this industry. That's what an industry is, it's a community, and that's probably the thing that I enjoy the most. What a great industry group of people – the growers, the allied industry members and the people at the Almond Board are an incredible team – not to mention our partners overseas in India, Spain, Germany and Japan who are incredible partners. What about the Almond Board of California do you most appreciate or take pride in? Joe : I'm in marketing, exporting, sales and processing. As a company, I'm extremely grateful to the Almond Board for information. When it comes to technical information about food safety or exports, I can't tell you how nice it is to be able to pick up a phone and get an answer within an hour or two – and some of the stuff is very technical. Those answers makes our jobs as salespersons and handlers much easier, which allows us to educate our customers. I do appreciate how the Board has been on the front end of the technical issues, helping to steer the conversation. That is probably one of the most understated successes of the Almond Board. Bob: I think that the Almond Board's research that's been done over the last few decades in health and nutrition is probably the foundation of our industry's success. I think that our promotional efforts have been incredibly successful. I look specifically at what this industry has done in India and it's just a resounding success story. I look at what has happened in the last half dozen years in Western Europe – Europeans tended to eat almonds in sweets like marzipan and sweet snacks, but through promotional efforts, ABC has helped to create a whole new almond consumption habit focused on healthy snacking. Changing a culture is difficult and that healthy snacking campaign is an amazing success story. I look at the way that almond shipments to Europe in the last few years have had double digit growth in a static, mature, non-growing market. ABC did the research and then put the resources behind it and I think it's just an incredible success story. Because it's a new consumption habit, what we can do in the next five years is really exciting. What's your favorite way to eat almonds? Joe: I think a chocolate chip almond flour cookie washed down with unsweetened almond milk is as about as good as it gets. Bob: Number one, a chocolate enrobed Nonpareil 20/22 from Japan. The name of the product is Almond Peak from Glico. It's the best. I also love turron from Spain and will never turn down an almond baklava from Turkey. Bob Silveria Vann Family Orchards and Grower Member, ABC Board of Directors Almond Board of California 22

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