( USDA )

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue has named the 25 members of the recently reestablished Fruit and Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee.

The newly appointed members will serve terms of up to two years beginning immediately and ending in 2020, according to a news release.

“This is a strong group representing a cross section of the fruit and vegetable industry,” Perdue said in the release. “I look forward to having them as a resource for feedback and firsthand information to help us better understand the impact of USDA programs on farmers, ranchers, packagers, shippers and everyone involved in bringing quality food to American families and exporting American-grown products around the world.”

The appointees were selected from nominations received in May 2018 resulting from the April 23 announcement of the re-establishment of the committee and request for nominations.

Newly appointed members are:

  • David Bell, Cherryfield Foods Inc. Farm/Maine Wild Blueberry Company, Cherryfield and Machias, Maine;
  • Richard Bowman, JJ Family of Farms, Loxahatchee, Fla.;
  • Chalmers Carr III, Titan Farms LLC, Ridge Spring, S.C.;
  • John Chandler, Chandler Farms L.P., Selma, Calif.;
  • Kristine (Tina) Ellor, Phillips Mushroom Farms L.P., Kennett Square, Pa.;
  • Kelly Carl (KC) Ely, FreshPoint, Oklahoma City, Okla.;
  • Bret Erickson, J&D Produce, Edinburg, Texas;
  • Molly Gleason, Illinois Stewardship Alliance, Springfield, Ill.;
  • Julie Gordon, Cherry Marketing Institute, Dewitt, Mich.;
  • Kiley Harper-Larsen, NK Lago Farms LLC, Pahokee, Fla.;
  • Jeffrey Huckaby, Grimmway Enterprises Inc., Bakersfield, Calif.;
  • Michael Janis, San Francisco Wholesale Produce Market, San Francisco, Calif.;
  • Brian Kirschenmann, Kirschenmann Farms Inc., Bakersfield, Calif.;
  • Tom Lipetzky, Colorado Department of Agriculture, Broomfield, Colo.;
  • Paul Palmby, Seneca Foods Corporation, Janesville, Wis.;
  • Luis Pérez-Codina, Liaison CAN/US Logistics dba Can/US Fresh, Miami, Fla.;
  • Kelly Powell-McIver, North Carolina Sweet Potato Commission, Benson, N.C.;
  • Reade Sievert, Associated Wholesale Grocers, Kansas City, Kan.;
  • Steve Smith, Red Gold Inc., Elwood, Ind.;
  • Harry (Bruce) Talbott, Talbott’s Mountain Gold LLLP, Palisade, Colo.;
  • Lawrence (Greg) Tison, Jacksonville Farmers Market, Jacksonville, Fla.;
  • Derrin Wheeler, MBG Marketing, Alma, Ga.;
  • Tommy Wilkins, Grow Farms Texas, Donna, Texas; 
  • Charles Wingard, Walter P. Rawl & Sons, Pelion, S.C.; and 
  • Donn Zea, California Dried Plum Board/Prune Marketing Committee, Roseville, Calif.

Originally chartered in 2001, the FVIAC advises the Secretary of Agriculture on issues affecting the fruit and vegetable industry. Committee members represent organic and non-organic growers, shippers, wholesalers, retailers, industry trade associations, importers, processors, foodservice suppliers, food brokers, state departments of agriculture and farmers markets; and represent local, regional and national levels, the USDA said.

More information about the committee is available on the Fruit and Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee page on the AMS website.