Farming Should Resolve to Protect, Nourish, and Engage
Did you turn over a new leaf in January? I’m asking because Florida Fertilizer and Agrichemical Association’s (FFAA) leadership is resolved to strategically align the association’s activities and programs to be more relevant for today’s members. Recognizing this is an ongoing process, we’re planning out SMART goals — specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely — to achieve our resolution.
FFAA’s Annual Meeting is the symbolic start of the association’s year. It’s when the association’s members elect the Board’s officers and directors. FFAA’s current crop of officers is Chairman Mike Roberts (Griffin Fertilizer), Vice Chairman John Baxter (Helena Chemical), and Secretary/Treasurer Charles Lanfier (Brandt). They’ve taken the lead in working with the Board and FFAA’s staff to make good on this resolution.
FFAA’s Annual Meeting also is when significant changes are announced. At FFAA’s 85th Annual Meeting this past summer, FFAA’s Board unveiled plans to better represent Florida’s pesticide and fertilizer industries in the information age.
The Board right-sized its numbers, adopting a plan to reduce the Board from 21 elected members to 15 members by 2020; unveiled a revamped website; and revealed a new logo with the tagline: Nourish. Protect. Engage.
Here’s what that means to us:
FFAA members help Florida’s farms, fields, landscapes, and communities grow. Whether it’s products replenishing nutrients in the soils or companies’ community support, we are helping Florida grow better.
One measure of our success in this area has been the national recognition in the past four years of three Florida growers and their retailer partners as 4R Nutrient Stewardship advocates. Kudos to Crop Production Services’ grower partners Alan Jones of Jones Potato Farm and tomato grower Gary Reeder, as well as Griffin Fertilizer’s grower partner Glenn Beck for achieving this significant acknowledgement showing they are using the right source of nutrients at the right rate, right place, and right time for agronomic and environmental payoffs.
As 2018 4R Advocates, citrus growers Glenn and Mark Beck and Griffin’s Rob Watson will be honored with four other grower/retailer pairs from around the nation at the Commodity Classic in Anaheim, CA. The five pairs of 4R Advocates also will represent the 4R program during the Commodity Classic trade show.
FFAA members work to save plants from pests, diseases, and deficiencies. We also defend our industry while promoting environmentally responsible, economically viable, sustainable food, foliage, fiber, and biofuels production in Florida.
During FFAA’s Winter Business Meeting, the Board also voted to invest association funds in support of two programs which dovetail with these objectives — the green industries’ Environmental Research and Education Foundation and the biotech communication outreach efforts directed by the University of Florida’s Dr. Kevin Folta. By contributing funds to these worthy programs, FFAA seeks to engage, educate, and inform increasingly skeptical audiences about research and both the benefits and the drawbacks of inputs and cropping innovations.
FFAA seeks opportunities to share information on ag-chem, pesticide, and fertilizer use in Florida. We will fight for and work to advance good, peer-reviewed science-based public policy.
FFAA’s Board voted to ramp up its social media communication channels in the next year. We’re committed to communicating with elected leaders and key influencers, particularly in areas where there are either ag and urban clashes or the potential for such conflict. A robust online presence is one way we plan to reach those “outside of the choir.”
If your resolution is to be learn more and to be more engaged in Florida’s premier ag-chem association, make sure to attend FFAA’s 86th Annual Meeting, June 27-29 at the Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa in Manalapan.
Time will tell how successful FFAA and you are in achieving these goals. We certainly anticipate some setbacks along the way. Resiliency will be key. Nothing, however, will stand in the way of our resolution to continue to represent FFAA members with integrity and the facts.