Perdue Welcomes Specialty Crop Producers’ Ideas on NAFTA

Abbey Taylor Legislative, Top Posts, Trade

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue met with the Mexican Secretary of Agriculture last week. Discussions about various issues for producers in both countries took place. Of course, this is all leading up to talks concerning the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). During a teleconference, Perdue said he knows certain sectors of agriculture, like fruit and vegetable growers across the Southeast …

First Organic Food & Farming Summit

Abbey Taylor Organic, Top Posts

Florida Organic Growers is holding its inaugural Organic Food & Farming Summit on September 17–19 in Gainesville, Florida. Andi Emrich, summit coordinator, says she is very excited for the event and thinks it will be a huge success. The summit will start on Sunday, September 17, with farm tours around Gainesville. Among the list of farms to be toured is …

New Techniques for Blueberry Breeding

Jaci Schreckengost Berries, Top Posts

Patricio Munoz, assistant professor of blueberry breeding at the University of Florida, says researchers are trying to find new ways to go about the blueberry breeding process. The traditional blueberry breeding process can easily take 15 years, Munoz says. He believes finding new ways to shorten this process benefits everyone, including producers and consumers. By shortening the breeding process, the …

NAFTA Is a Problem for U.S. Specialty Crop Industry

Abbey Taylor Labor, Legislative, Top Posts

The House Agriculture Committee held a hearing in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, July 26, to listen to comments about renegotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and what those renegotiations could mean for different sectors of the U.S. agriculture industry. It is no secret that NAFTA has caused some mixed feelings from different U.S. farmers. Some have greatly …

UF Researchers Work to Control Pepper Pests

Jaci Schreckengost Pests, Top Posts

Pepper weevil is a huge issue for pepper growers, but researchers like Philip Stansly, a professor of entomology at the University of Florida (UF), are working to find management techniques. Stansly says pepper weevil is the main pest for pepper growers in Florida. Insecticides, shortened crop cycles and UV, metalized, reflective mulches are three forms of pest management techniques being …

trade

FFVA Announces Class 7 of Emerging Leader Development Program

Abbey Taylor Top Posts

The Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association (FFVA) has selected 10 up-and-coming agriculture industry leaders to participate in its Emerging Leader Development Program for the coming year. The 2017-2018 Class 7 members are Myles Basore, TKM Bengard; Maria Cavazos, R.C. Hatton; Catherine Cellon, Duda Farm Fresh Foods; Philip Grigsby, Premier Ag Finance; Brent Johnson, DuPont; Frankie Montalvo, Glades Formulating Corp.; Justin …

Vegetable, Berry Growers Move to H-2A for Labor Supply

Jaci Schreckengost Labor, Top Posts

Due to a lack of domestic farm workers in the United States, many growers use the H-2A program for their labor needs. So says Fritz Roka, University of Florida associate professor of agriculture economics at the Southwest Florida Research and Education Center in Immokalee. Vegetable and specialty crops are labor intensive crops, which causes a lot of concern for growers …

UF Program Helps Keep Strawberry Stock Clean

Jaci Schreckengost Strawberry, Top Posts

The Strawberry Clean Plant Program at the University of Florida (UF) wants to get growers off to a good start by providing healthy strawberry plants. Vance Whitaker, an associate professor and director of the strawberry breeding program at UF, says plants are brought from places with cooler summers than Florida, because there is less precipitation, leading to fewer diseases in …