in the KNOW

February 1, 2013

New Democrats Visit Ag Council Members

Pictured (from L-R) Blue Diamond Growers' CEO Mark Jansen with Assemblymembers: Perea, Eggman, Bonilla, Cooley, Dr. Pan and Frazier.



Ag Council members welcomed legislators from the New Democrats-a group of moderate Democrats in the Legislature-for site tours and a reception yesterday.  We express our sincere gratitude to the following Assemblymembers for joining us to learn more about our members: Henry T. Perea, Susan Bonilla, Dr. Richard Pan, Jim Frazier, Susan Eggman and Ken Cooley.

The legislators first visited Blue Diamond Growers in the heart of downtown Sacramento where they were greeted by CEO Mark Jansen. The group toured the plant, as well as the new Almond Innovation Center on its opening day where they had the opportunity to taste some of the latest almond products. The Center will increase the speed of innovation and lower the cost of developing new products. As they wrapped-up their tour, the legislators learned about the significant health benefits of eating almonds from grower, Dr. George Goshgarian.

Next, the group traveled to Lodi where Pacific Coast Producers hosted the legislators at its nearly one million square-foot distribution center. Dan Vincent, CEO of Pacific Coast Producers, welcomed the legislators to the farmer-owned cooperative, which is a cannery that distributes California-grown products such as tomatoes, peaches, and apricots for private labels. The legislators discussed issues such as cap and trade and food safety. They also toured the distribution center and tasted various products.

The day concluded with a reception where the New Democrats had an opportunity to connect with additional Ag Council members and farmer-owners at the Cellar Door in Lodi.

We greatly appreciate the support of our members who were able to attend the reception and meet this key group of legislators. In addition, we thank the legislators for the significant amount of time they devoted to learning more about our members.  And, a special thank you to Blue Diamond Growers and Pacific Coast Producers for their help in this outreach effort.

Gov. Brown Earns High Marks in Survey

Governor Jerry Brown’s job approval rating hit a record high of 51 percent, up from 46 percent from this time last year, according to a recent statewide survey by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC). The Legislature’s approval rating is also up, at 41 percent, which is the highest it has been since December 2007.

The governor’s budget plan received support from 69 percent of those Californians surveyed with 22 percent opposed. The governor’s 2013-14 budget proposal would pay down state debt and create a reserve instead of restoring social services cut in recent years. The budget projects a small surplus and increases both K-12 and higher education spending.

In January, PPIC surveyed over 1,700 adults in California on public policy issues including immigration, health care, taxes, guns and others. Click HERE for more detailed results.

World Ag Expo Breakfast

Assemblymember Tony Mendoza


Join Ag Council for breakfast at the
2013 World Ag Expo in Tulare
February 12, 2013
9:00 a.m.

Featuring Keynote Speaker
Assemblymember Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia)

The former Chair of the Latino Legislative Caucus, Assemblymember Tony Mendoza, will discuss how the farming community can best reach out to Latino legislators and voters on ag issues.

The address for the Expo is 4500 S. Laspina Street in Tulare, CA. Once you’ve parked, the breakfast will be held in the VIP Event Tent (located on Expo Lane, between “S” and “T” Streets on the Expo showgrounds).

There is no cost to attend. However, RSVPs are required as space is limited. Please email rebecca@agcouncil.org or call Rebecca Osumi at (916)443-4887 to RSVP.

We hope to see you at this exciting event as Ag Council kicks off 2013.

Snow Survey

Water content in mountain snowpack is below average according to the second snow survey of the year conducted by the Department of Water Resources (DWR) this week. The survey reveals that statewide water content is 93 percent of average for this time of year and 55 percent of the April 1 average.

In releasing the snow survey, DWR Director Mark Cowin said, “We’re still seeing decent snowpack conditions due to storms in late November and early December. Those early season storms also erased the deficit in our reservoir storage, but relatively dry weather this month is once again a reminder that the weather is unpredictable, and we must always practice conservation.”

About one-third of California’s water for residental, ag and industrial use is provided by the snowpack as it begins to melt each year in the springtime.

Read more by clicking HERE.