PMA Government Affairs Committee’s First Meeting Focuses On Food Safety

Produce Marketing Association’s (PMA) volunteer-led Government Affairs Committee met for the first time Jan. 12 in Washington to guide the association’s work on key industry issues including consumption, trade, and labor, with an emphasis on food safety. Among its first actions, the committee directed PMA staff to focus their 2011 efforts on driving public policy to increase consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Committee members’ recommendations will be presented to the PMA Board of Directors for action at that group’s meeting on Jan. 25-28. The committee’s mission is to recommend policy direction to the board on government affairs solutions to advance PMA members’ interests.

“Government Affairs Committee members understand how government can affect their businesses, so the timing of this first meeting proved particularly notable and valuable given recent passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act,” said Schnuck Markets vice president of produce and floral Mike O’Brien, who serves as committee chair and chairman of the PMA Board of Directors. “PMA will actively participate in development of the new law’s implementing regulations, and the committee’s input will ensure PMA members’ interests in improving public health and consumer confidence in the safety of our foods are heard.”

“We also reaffirmed PMA’s approach to government relations, that is, providing industry expertise to government and promoting consensus building,” said O’Brien. “Today’s legislative and regulatory environment requires a new approach to interacting with government, and PMA is providing the model.”

PMA’s Government Affairs Committee, as well as a host of other committees, resulted from a new volunteer leadership model PMA implemented in spring 2010. The new model – designed to unite PMA’s membership across all segments of the supply chain to work on topics of common interest – expanded opportunities for members to get involved in guiding their association by serving on boards, committees and task forces. In turn, with more member input PMA is better positioned to ensure the business solutions it creates and provides to members answer their most pressing business needs.

source: PMA press release

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