Dan Botts (left), the technical committee chairman for the Minor Crop Farmer Alliance, receives a photo signed by technical committee members from the alliance’s chairman, Phil Korson. ( Minor Crop Farmer Alliance )

Minor Crop Farmer Alliance leaders recently gathered to honor Dan Botts, the group’s first and only technical committee chairman, who is retiring at the end of the year.

Botts’ last committee meeting was Nov. 27, just before his retirement ceremony.

Botts, who is also retiring as the Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association’s vice president of industry resources, advocated for U.S. specialty crop growers in Washington, D.C., as well as with foreign governments and agencies that regulate international trade. He fought for the transparency and science-based registration and re-registration of crop protection tools in his role at the Minor Crop Farmer Alliance, according to a news release.

The Minor Crop Farmer Alliance was founded in 1991 to address legislative and administrative policies, ensuring the continued availability of crop-protection chemicals for minor use crops. Members include fruit, vegetable, nut, ornamental plant and other specialty crop producer groups nationwide.  

“We have been equal opportunity contrarian voices when we see things aren’t being done right, and we have offered solutions where we see problems,” Botts told committee meeting attendees, according to the release. 

Several industry leaders at the event, including chairman Phil Korson, president of the Cherry Marketing Institute, praised Botts’ “near encyclopedic knowledge” and “total commitment” to growers.

Botts indicated he plans to continue to work in retirement on a “couple of issues that are critical” in his home state of Florida, according to the release.