By Ashley Robinson
Georgia growers may recognize the man on the cover of the December issue of VSCNews Magazine. Stanley Culpepper, University of Georgia (UGA) Cooperative Extension Weed Agronomist, has more than two decades of experience working with vegetable crops. Learn more about Culpepper’s expertise and his impact on the vegetable industry in the magazine.
Also discussed in the magazine are current issues facing growers in the Southeast. This part of the country is paradise for root-knot nematodes, one of the most rapidly spreading pests. Johan Desaeger, an assistant professor at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, discusses management strategies for vegetable growers.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s crucial to educate farm owners, supervisors and workers on how to best do their jobs under pandemic conditions while preserving their health and livelihood. Kimberly Morgan, an associate professor and Extension economist at the UF/IFAS Southwest Florida Research and Education Center, shares how the UF/IFAS Farm Labor Supervisor COVID-19 Safety Training program has worked to protect Ag workers during the pandemic.
Any fruit or vegetable grower knows that untimely freezes can cause tremendous problems for their crops. Pam Knox, agricultural climatologist, and Tim Coolong, both UGA professors, share freeze-protection methods for fruit and vegetable crops.
Additionally, Taylor Langford, a UF/IFAS produce safety education and training specialist; Matt Krug, statewide UF/IFAS food science Extension agent; and Michelle Danyluk, a UF/IFAS professor, come together to discuss the Food Safety Modernization Act’s Produce Safety Rule (PSR) which highlights the need to reduce risks associated with agricultural water that will contact fresh produce.
Finally, there are new BMP record-keeping requirements for Florida growers. Ajia Paolillo, a UF/IFAS Extension multi-county citrus agent based in Arcadia, has a Q-&-A style article featuring Matt Warren, environmental manager with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Office of Agricultural Water Policy in Hardee County to answer the most common questions growers have regarding the new requirement.
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