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Agricultural News

USDA Tells American Pecan Council the Referendum on Their Federal Marketing Order was Approved

Wed, 01 Sep 2021 05:29:03 EDT

USDA Tells American Pecan Council the Referendum on Their Federal Marketing Order was Approved The annual meeting of the American Pecan Council was held via Zoom on Tuesday, August 31, 2021- primarily to review the marketing, research and data collecting plans and approve the Fiscal Year 2022 budget for the Council, which starts October 1, 2021. At the end of the meeting, Pecan Council Members and other stakeholders got a big surprise from one of the USDA reps on the Zoom call. Abby Campos brought up the referendum vote held back in June for the continuation of the American Pecan Industry's Federal Marketing Order. Voting ended on June 28th- and according to Campos, the votes have been tallied and that a majority of the votes cast were in favor of continuing the Pecan Federal Marketing Order for five more years. No additional details were provided- but Council members were given the okay to start spreading the word about the positive vote.

U.S. Pecan Growers who produced 50,000 pounds of inshell pecans or more over the four years from October 1, 2016, to September 30, 2020, or who owns at least 30 pecan acres in the Pecan Belt were eligible to cast a vote yea or nay for the continuation of the Federal Marketing Order. This was the first referendum by producers since the FMO was established five years ago.

Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays talked on Tuesday afternoon with the Chairman of the American Pecan Council, Mike Adams of Caldwell, Texas about the surprise announcement from USDA- as well as going into details with Hays about the domestic and international marketing plans that we given the green light for the new fiscal year starting October 1, 2021. Adams is the first and only Chairman that has led the American Pecan Council.

About the vote- Adams told Hays that "we are pleased that the activities and marketing efforts of the Council have been validated through the vote of the growers"adding that "It was exciting to get that announcement from USDA."

Adams talked about the challenge of starting the promotion and marketing efforts on behalf of the Pecan industry literally from scratch after the vote five years ago provided the opportunity to set up a self program for those involved in the pecan business. Of the Council, Mike Adams says as things began- "We had no phone number, we had no address, we had no employees" but he and other pecan producers had a dream of working together to help the pecan industry to improve its marketing position with consumers. He pointed out that simply setting up the framework for the American Pecan Council took over a year- learning how to comply with USDA rules and regulations that go along with collecting the Marketing Order assessment that was to be used to promote pecans and to provide research to improve the well being of the industry.

Early on, the Council was able to trademark the slogan, "American Pecans, the Original Supernut." The Council, on it's website, told consumers that "The pecan is a complex whole food, packed with multiple health-promoting nutrients and bioactive compounds. Each delicious pecan is a nutrition powerhouse."

Adams says that the vision to grab more share of the nut market will continue over the next five years, now that the first vote since the Pecan Council has started telling the Pecan story has happened- and it was a yes vote. That marketingwill happen domestically- and also iin the international market- APC targeting efforts in China and Germany with money in the new fiscal year.

Listen to Mike Adams talk about the rise of the American Pecan Council- and what the future may hold for US pecan growers- both for the improved varieties as well as the Native nuts. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for the conversaion with Ron and Mike.

Learn more about the American Pecan Council by going to their website- available here.

Disclaimer- Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays was asked to serve as a Public Member of the Council. Many of the Federal Marketing Orders have a public member- someone who is not directly tied to the day to day production or processing of pecans. Initially, Hays served as the Alternate in the Public Member position as the Council was being organized back in 2016.. In late 2020, Hays was nominated as the primary Public Member for the Council, with his current term lasting through 2024.

Picture above courtesy of Pecan South Magazine.



Ron Hays talks with Mike Adams, Chair of the American Pecan Council
right-click to download mp3


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