Nov 6, 2023
Almond Board learns from the industry in 8-stop tour

Clarice Turner, president and CEO for The Almond Board of California (ABC), and the board directors engaged with the industry during an eight-stop tour.

The informal settings encouraged deep conversations, honest questions and idea sharing. Industry members up and down the Central Valley were part of this tour. Board members and Turner hosted gatherings starting in Shafter in the south valley and ending in Orland in the north.

“While the long-term outlook for the industry seems promising, the short-term economics have left many growers contemplating their next steps,” said Alexi Rodriguez, chair of the board of directors for ABC. “The listening sessions were a great opportunity to engage with industry members to share information, experiences and ideas. It was also great for Clarice to hear from stakeholders in each region, as their challenges and priorities vary. Unfortunately, the Almond Board can’t solve every problem and many will be left to make some tough decisions going forward. That said, the Board and the organization are working hard to tackle the areas where we can make a positive difference for the future of the industry.”

The listening sessions were casual and designed to be small so the questions and conversations could go deep. They are one of the ways Turner, who started as CEO for ABC in September, is introducing herself to the industry.

“I enjoyed meeting so many interesting, caring and knowledgeable people across the valley,” Turner said. “I heard many stories and learned so much about the history of this great industry, people’s hopes and concerns, and about their commitment to their land, roots, communities and to almonds. Despite the current difficult macro environment, we had very constructive conversations about the future of the industry. It was an inspiring week.”

Subjects ranged from broad policy to technical questions, and the conversations will help guide sessions at The Almond Conference 2023 in Sacramento, which runs Dec. 5-7. The topics and issues raised during this tour will be addressed by experts during in-depth panel discussions. Rodriguez, Turner and the board’s directors will also be available during the conference to answer questions industry members may have.

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