The United Fresh Produce Association will host five Town Hall meetings and visit dozens of member farms and facilities during a two-week Fresh Impact Tour to six states and southern Ontario, Canada, August 8-23. United Fresh President and CEO Tom Stenzel and senior staff will travel through New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana and Leamington, Ontario, to highlight the impact made by United Fresh members in shaping national policy on key issues such as food safety, ensuring a legal workforce, increasing produce consumption, and more.
“When United Fresh members work together across the supply chain, our impact is magnified in shaping national policy,” Stenzel said. ”This will be a great opportunity to highlight the work of our members throughout these eastern growing regions, and see their operations in the middle of production season. We want to show that members across the country have a real voice in setting national industry policy. While the produce industry may have a larger population in some other production regions, each of our members in these states can have a huge impact on national issues by working with their members of Congress and joining in the industry’s annual Washington Public Policy Conference this October.”
Stenzel pointed to the tour’s town hall meeting in Southern Ontario as one of many highlights.
“Our visit to Leamington recognizes the stake that our Canadian members have in sound U.S. policy, and vice versa,” he said. “Our industry transcends governmental borders, and deserves fair and equitable business and government standards among all trading partners. Our members in more than 30 countries around the world are just as interested in pending new U.S. food safety regulations as our domestic members.”
The Fresh Impact Tour will begin in western New York on Monday, August 8, with visits to growers, packers and local retailers along the way. The tour will then make stops in the Garden State for visits with local distributors in northern New Jersey before heading south to the Vineland growing regions to see a wide range of fruit and vegetable producers, brokers and local companies. The tour ends its first week moving west to central Pennsylvania, visiting with fruit and vegetable growers and fresh-cut processors. The second week of the Fresh Impact Tour stops in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana, and will include a meeting with greenhouse producers in Leamington, Ontario.