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Episode 8: Bret Sill: Harvest Technology


Almond Journey Podcast

In this episode, we visit Kern County almond grower Bret Sill of Sill Properties to talk about harvesting technology. Bret’s family has been farming in the Shafter area for nearly 100 years. Bret attributes some of their success to the fact that they embrace innovation and technology, which recently has meant new irrigation technology, autonomous sprayers, and low dust harvest equipment.

“When we take it to the huller, we have a cleaner product for them to run. And now with freight being an issue and the hullers charging for freight, we can take advantage of this new, better efficient equipment that’s going to give us a cleaner product.” - Bret Sill

Sill Properties continues to take advantage of the incentives available for low dust equipment from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District.

“There’s so much technology out there. You’ve got to see what’s going to work for you and for your farm, because if not we’d go broke trying to use all of the technology that’s out there. It’s just deciphering what I think I can use that’s going to be good for me and for our farm.” - Bret Sill

In Today’s episode:

  • Meet Bret Sill, the ranch manager of Sill Properties
  • Learn about Sill Properties, its origin and Bret’s involvement in its management
  • Discover the benefits Bret acquired from the Almond Leadership Program
  • Explore the new equipment and technology they are implementing on their operation and the incentives to support these upgrades

ABC Update

In today’s ABC Update, Jesse Roseman, principal analyst for the Almond Board, joins us to discuss ongoing projects to improve air quality and dust management in orchards. Jesse shares the research projects of the Almond Board that cross over into this regulatory space and the incentives for producers that will help defray the cost of some of the low-dust equipment.

The Almond Journey Podcast is brought to you by the Almond Board of California. This show explores how growers, handlers, and other stakeholders are making things work in their operations to drive the almond industry forward. Host Tim Hammerich visits with leaders throughout the Central Valley of California and beyond who are finding innovative ways to improve their operations, connect with their communities, and advance the almond industry.

ABC recognizes the diverse makeup of the California almond industry and values contributions offered by its growers, handlers, and allied industry members. However, the opinions, services and products discussed in existing and future podcast episodes are by no means an endorsement or recommendation from ABC. The Almond Journey podcast is not an appropriate venue to express opinions on national, state, local or industry politics. As a Federal Marketing Order, the Almond Board of California is prohibited from lobbying or advocating on legislative issues, as well as setting field and market prices.