(CORRECTED) California Citrus Mutual is set to celebrate 40 years representing citrus growers at its annual meeting Nov. 16.

The association was founded “by growers for growers” in 1977, according to a news release, with the mission of ensuring fair marketplace competition and educating policymakers and the public on the economic and environmental value California’s citrus industry brings to the state.

“Over the years, our mission has expanded to meet the growing and changing needs of the industry,” long-time association president Joel Nelsen said in the release. Nelsen has led for the past 35 years.

“The original role of (California Citrus Mututal) was to be an unbiased source of market information and price data. While that function remains a key benefit of membership, our influence and leadership within and outside the industry is far broader.

“Whether it be interacting with policymakers or fostering open lines of communication within our own industry, our objective is first and foremost to create a business climate that ensures citrus growers have a sustainable future in California,” Nelsen said in the release.

California Citrus Mutual represents over 2,500 growers and 75% of the state’s $3.3 billion citrus industry, according to the release.

Association chairman Curt Holmes, who is returning for a second term as chairman of the board of directors, is optimistic about the future: “If the results of the past are an indication of the future, I am confident that (California Citrus Mututal) will continue to lead, shape and unify our industry into a cohesive force so that the growers, employees and support industries remain prosperous,” Holmes said in the release.

The association’s annual meeting is set for the evening of Nov. 16 at the Visalia Convention Center, and will feature syndicated columnist Ruben Navarrette speaking about "fake news" in the current social and political climate.

Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased by contacting California Citrus Mutual at 559-592-3790. 

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story had an incorrect date for California Citrus Mutual's annual meeting.