Out of the Orchard

Agency directors from Washington, Oregon, Michigan, and New York give their take on the world of tree fruit. View blog

The Wind Machine

Occasional thoughts on the politics and activities of Washington, D.C., as they may have relevance to our tree fruit industry. View blog 


All Good Fruit Grower blog posts:

Cuba Still Defying the Law of Gravitation

● Syria has managed to generate headaches not only for Middle East policy experts, but also for all those desiring quick Capitol Hill action in September on such pending matters as the Farm Bill, immigration reform, and appropriations. With President Obama now asking for a congressional debate and vote [...]

The Windy City

●  Last Wednesday and Thursday the United States Apple Association held its 2013 Apple Crop & Marketing Conference in Chicago. I attended this annual conference and then stayed over for the set of USApple committee and board meetings that followed in its wake on Friday and Saturday.

● At the [...]

Safe at the Plate

● FDA took to the highway this week for an informational tour of the fruit and vegetable  industry of the Pacific Northwest. Starting in Boise on Monday morning, a large group comprising regulatory officials and educators from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, land grant colleges, and state departments [...]

SAHCODHA — Bureaucratic acronyms run amok

● Newly proposed safety rules aimed at food imports contain one of the better examples of bureaucratic acronyms run amok that I have recently seen: SAHCODHA, which refers to hazards that are reasonably likely to cause “serious adverse health consequences or death to humans or animals.”

The Food and Drug [...]

Do I dare to eat a peach?

●  Last Friday the Food and Drug Administration rolled out two more of its proposed rules implementing FSMA, the Food Safety and Modernization Act. They deal mainly with food imports. Two new acronyms will join the bureaucratic food safety lexicon: VQIP (Voluntary Qualified Importer Program) and FSVP (Foreign Supplier [...]

Unlevel Fields

● A new Farm Bill is still a far ways from a Rose Garden bill-signing.  With the costly nutrition title stripped out of the House-passed version and the resulting hard feelings, it is uncertain how this will all come together in a legislative conference with the Senate. Meanwhile it is [...]

Farm Bill Brouhaha

● Today, in a surprisingly quick move, the House of Representatives passed by a vote of 216 to 208 a revised Farm Bill (H.R. 2642), a modified version of the proposed five-year Farm Bill that went down in flames on June 20. The big change? The majority stripped out, [...]

The Friendly Skies

● Immigration reform legislation has passed the U.S. Senate, but now faces tough times in the House. Unlike in the Senate, there is no clear set of respected leaders in the House of Representatives who want to make this reform happen–and many who want to see it fail. Most [...]

Farm Bill In Flames

● Today the House of Representatives failed to pass a new five-year Farm Bill by a vote of 195-234. This surprise defeat throws the future of traditional big Farm Bill packages into question. The union of urban and rural political interests that has existed since the 1930s in favor [...]

DC Shufflings

●  USDA has shuffled its leadership deck, especially as related to international trade policy. Sue Heinen, leader of the Foreign Agricultural Service, has moved across Independence Avenue to the Whitten Building to become acting deputy under secretary for farm and foreign agricultural services. She is now deputy to Darci [...]