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Position Details

081 Orchard Systems Ecology Specialist


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This proposal has been formally submitted for the 2012 cycle.



Pomology positions have been critical for the fruit and nut crops in California to being the best in the world in quality and production capability. With ever changing regulatory, pest pressures, changing growing conditions this position will be even more valuable to the industry in the future than it is now. I stronly urge you to fund this position. I know we will support the individual with support dollars once on the job.
Posted Apr 30, 2012 5:28 PM by Gary L. Obenauf
Pomology positions are much needed by the industry. With the aging group of specialist that we have now we need to keep new personal coming on. I know industry will support this. We need to stay on top of our research to keep pace with the world around us and the new developments that are happening in our industry. I urge you to fund this position. It will be strongly supported by industry.
Posted May 9, 2012 7:59 AM by John Taylor
California, with it's unique climate and soils is ideally positioned to provide abundant food including fruits and nuts to a growing world population. Our main obstacle is the ever present need to do it more efficiently. This position would directly serve that need keeping California agriculture as a major food provider to the world. I urge you to fund this position, the industry both wants and needs it.

Posted May 13, 2012 7:48 AM by Bob Amarel
In order to compete in the world market, the California prune industry needs additional research in the areas of sunlight optimization to improve dry ratios, tree structure & canopy management to reduce production costs and general physiology work to better understand how to improve our product through plant breeding. As chairman of the Calif Dried Plum board, I can say that the industry would be interested to sponsor additional research into these areas, and I hope this position can be filled with someone that has this expertise.
Posted May 17, 2012 10:05 AM by Joe Turkovich
Maintaining our #1 position in the global market for high quality dried plums is increasingly more difficult as South America and other competitors produce less expensively and often enjoy more favorable trade policies. The key to continued market success is differintiation and that starts in the orchard, not only through finding ways to improve quality, function and taste but by developing new cost-effective methods for growers that return better profitability as downward price pressures persist. The California Dried Plum Board is committed to supporting beneficial, targeted research to help achieve these goals. I urge you to fund this position.
Posted May 17, 2012 11:12 AM by Donn Zea
As President andy CEO of Sunsweet Growers, the largest producer of Prunes in the world with over 300 grower owned members, I can say that the industry would be interested to sponsor additional research into these areas. I strongly urge you to fund this position.
Posted May 17, 2012 12:03 PM by Arthur Driscoll II
CA orchards are a significant portion of CA Agriculture and the overall CA Economy. It is essential that CA orchards remain competitive in the global economy. In order to do this CA orchards need to be financially sustainable. This position will add value to existing efforts to help keep CA orchards financially sustainable and competitive on global level.
Posted May 17, 2012 12:06 PM by James Strong
Pomology positions and what they are able to contribute to California Prune Growers can be very valuable in providing research in areas such as improved fruit quality and reduced production cost in their orchards. I urge you to provide funding for this position.
Posted May 17, 2012 1:12 PM by Melvin Ward
I urge you to fund this position. California needs to continue to lead the domestic and global industry with research and development in order to keep our growers at the forefront economically and quality wise as well as protecting this very vital part of California Agriculture.
Posted May 17, 2012 2:23 PM by Mike Johnson
I urge you to fund this position, Califonia prune growers need this research and development for the future profitablity in their orchards.
Posted May 17, 2012 2:58 PM by Patrick Brogdon
In order to maintain Calif. leadership in the marketplace and continue to improve our growers sustainability , we need to continually improve our efficiency through better information and procedures. This position is a vital part of providing these valuable items and needs to be of the utmost priority in funding.
Posted May 17, 2012 3:00 PM by Larry R. Jennings
As a third generation farmer our family has benefitted more then once from the constant research that has been applied to help us in our fields. Whenever there is a chance to fund a new position I strongly support this action. As margins and regulations become more and more important in our everyday farming all of this valuable information is relied upon.
Posted May 17, 2012 3:10 PM by Phillip Filter
With California prune growers facing increased costs and increased pressure to produce only the highest quality large fruit,profitability in their orchards has become more and more challenging. Without reserch like this that will help maximize orchard output and help minimize after harvest production costs it will become increasingly difficult for California prune growers to stay competitive in the global market. I strongly ure you to fund this research.
Posted May 18, 2012 8:45 AM by Dan Lima
As someone who spends a great deal of time and energy helping our growers maximize their quality and return, research such as that derived from a position such as this is vital to our members ongoing successes as well as the entire industry. Please give the fullest of consideration to the funding of this position, as I believe that it will be money well spent in the farming community.
Posted May 18, 2012 11:05 AM by Bruce Norton
Pomology Farm Advisors in the Central Valley would be anxious to work with such a position. The research needs are significant and diverse. Funding for projects should be easy to obtain. Kearney is an ideal location for such a position.
Posted May 30, 2012 11:21 AM by Maxwell Norton
The pistachio, olive and fig industries would all be willing to support this position with research funding to investigate all aspects of orchard ecology and productivity; particularly the developing soil and water quality problems, primarily increasing salinity, and effects of climate change on California's orchard crops.
Posted May 30, 2012 1:08 PM by Louise Ferguson
On behalf of the California Pistachio Research Board and the 800+ growers it represents, we consider this a very high priority position. Tree nuts in general and pistachios in particular are facing a number of regulatory issues (nitrates, carbon footprint, VOCs) that need an ecological solution and Kearney is the best place to locate an applied position like this. Given the broad need, more than one position is needed to address all the commodities that need this kind of research approach.
Posted Aug 3, 2012 10:50 AM by Bob Klein
This is such a critical area for so many trees crops affecting the whole of the Central Valley,that it could provide research that affects many counties.
Posted Aug 3, 2012 2:08 PM by Ben Faber
The Almond Board of California is supportive of this position of taking an ecological systems approach to address production efficiency while maintaining environmental quality. Like pistachios mentioned above, this is driven by the need to balance production efficiency with the regulatory climate and with the need to be more sustainable. To this end, increasingly we are funding systems research in areas that are cited in the position description: 1) assessment of and improvement in the carbon footprint/energy efficiency of production and marketing practices; 2) use of integrated systems for enhancing water use efficiency, nutrient management (and soil health) in crop production; and 3) the continuing need for projects related to water and air quality.

We do have one caution. The California Tree Nut Research and Extension Planning Group (almonds, walnuts, and pistachios) also sees a need for a tree physiologist with expertise in tree development, dormancy and reproduction. To this end, we are hopeful that recent hires at the UC Davis campus and future hires at CSU Fresno can fill this need and that this position would be coordinated and collaborate with UCD and CSU Fresno hires.

In addition and as suggested in the position description, there are other examples were collaboration and coordination would be needed with other positions. For instance, if position #73 – Nutrient and Waste Management Specialist were to be funded, then there would need to be a close working relationship between the two.
Posted Aug 7, 2012 8:11 PM by Bob Curtis, Associate Director Agricultural Affairs, Almond Board of California

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