Committee Descriptions and Statement of Interests
Getting invovled in the California Almond industry is a great way to ensure almonds remain an essential crop in California and are demanded by consumers around the world. The Board is always on the lookout for new volunteers and accepts applications throughout the year; the commitees are seated in August. Committee descriptions and Statement of Interest Forms are hyperlinked below.
The Board seeks to ensure that its programs and policies are inclusive and would like to enhance the diversity of its volunteers. We encourage eligible women, minorities and people with disabilities to consider applying to participate.
Growers, handlers, huller/shellers and any allied industry members along the supply chain or affiliated with the almond industry are encouraged to get involved.
Finance and Audit Committee
The Finance and Audit Committee is responsible for reviewing all financial reports and making any appropriate budgetary recommendations, including the assessment rate for the upcoming crop year, to the Board. This committee is also responsible for reviewing quarterly and annual financial statements as well as ABC’s annual external audit, and presenting this information to the Board. The committee is comprised of five members, selected from the Board, five alternates and the Treasurer, who is the chair.
Almond Quality, Food Safety and Services Committee
The Almond Quality, Food Safety and Services Committee considers and recommends to the Board rules and regulations pertaining to the federal marketing order. This committee also provides oversight for other marketing order services and educational activities which are necessary to maintain the high quality standards and safety of the California almond industry. This committee consists of seven members. In addition, this committee oversees an Industry Services Subcommittee and a Biomass Task Force.
Industry Services Subcommittee
The Industry Services Subcommittee engages members of the almond community in creating a culture of lifelong learning, service and a desire to constantly improve current growing and processing practices that ensure a sustainable future and our right to farm. The committee oversees the creation and execution of programs and events that motivate industry members to become more efficient in and out of the field, demonstrating our commitment to leadership and the greater almond community.
Global Market Development Committee
The Global Market Development Committee evaluates growth opportunities available to the almond industry and makes recommendations to the Board. These recommendations include a worldwide market research and market development program for each crop year. The committee also administers government-funded marketing and research programs and may also recommend to the Board changes in the marketing order rules and regulations, granting credit to handlers for qualified promotional activities. These credits are granted based on the proportion of assessment credit determined to be granted for each type of promotional activity.
Nutrition Research Committee
The Nutrition Research Committee focuses on ongoing nutrition research which adds to the existing body of almond science and is utilized by the Board in global marketing outreach programs to promote the consumption of almonds. Current strategic research areas focus on the relationship between consumption of almonds and Heart Health, Diabetes/Prediabetes, Weight Management/Gut Health, Cognition, Phytochemicals/Composition, Allergens and other areas. This committee is comprised of seven members and three alternates, consisting of food scientists, nutritionists, almond growers and other almond industry representatives.
Global Communications Committee
The Global Communications Committee guides and informs strategy for industry and external communications about California almonds, the almond industry and the Almond Board of California. The committee will provide stakeholders and consumers with information about the almond industry and its practices, anticipate and provide counsel on various issues and potential crises, and disseminate industry-funded research findings to a variety of audiences. This group also engages members of the almond community by creating programs and events that motivate industry members to become more efficient in and out of the orchard.
Technical and Regulatory Affairs Committee
The Technical & Regulatory Affairs Committee provides support to and cooperates with almond industry stakeholders and other Almond Board committees, focusing on those issues that impact the production and worldwide marketing of California Almonds. This synergy will enable greater integration and contribute to the overall success of the industry.
Ag Regulatory Subcommittee
The Ag Regulatory Subcommittee monitors and develops policies and programs that respond to regulatory and technical issues affecting almond growing, hulling and shelling. This subcommittee considers opportunities in conservation, crop insurance, research and other related programs in order to prioritize grower and certain regulatory issues for Almond Board attention and response.
Strategic Ag Innovation Committee
The Strategic Ag Innovation Committee is the “strategic forward thinker” for the almond industry and is supported by specialty-area research working groups. This committee shall consider and recommend projects that maintain the almond industry’s leadership role as a “Crop of Choice” for California, and which reflect the overall production and environmental research needs of the almond industry. This committee consists of ten members and oversees the six specialty-area research working groups listed below. All of the working groups review research proposals and make funding recommendations to the Strategic Ag Innovation Committee.
1. Sustainability/ California Almond Sustainability Program Working Group
The Sustainability/California Almond Sustainability Program Working Group supports the sustainability of almond farming through development of grower tools, technology and practices that encourage continuous improvement while demonstrating to the supply chain the economic, environmental and community value of almond production.
2. Pest Management Working Group
The Pest Management Working Group identifies opportunities for better implementation of Integrated Pest Management techniques and programs utilizing advanced technology tools.
3. Orchard, Tree, Rootstock Working Group
The Orchard, Tree, Rootstock Working Group identifies advanced research to develop rootstocks, varieties and orchard management practices to improve orchard health and efficiency, and to reduce environmental impacts while maintaining or improving desirable almond characteristics.
4. Irrigation and Nutrients, Soil Health Working Group
The Irrigation and Nutrients, Soil Health Working Group maintains an enhanced ability to target irrigation and nutrient application in a way that is ideally at the individual tree level using advanced technologies to monitor the status of water and nutrient levels. The group also establishes what constitutes “soil health for almonds” and applies that understanding via practices to optimize orchard performance and environmental benefits.
5. Harvesting Working Group
The Harvesting Working Group is focused on reimagining almond harvesting to reduce harvest dust and improve food safety, orchard floor management and byproduct utilization. The Working Group’s mission is to develop and implement innovative harvesting practices that are practical and economically viable, and that minimize dust, maximize almond quality/safety and ensure the safety of farm workers.
6. Pollination and Bee Health Working Group
The Pollination and Bee Health Working Group prioritizes issues for ABC attention and response related to honey bee health. The goal of this group is to provide a safe, nutritional environment for pollinators in almond orchards, ensuring a sufficient and affordable supply of honey bees for almond pollination and reducing reliance on honey bees in the long term.