Ensuring Economic Viability
There is a sense of purpose in being part of a cooperative. For Blue Diamond Growers, our mission – our purpose – is a noble one. We are here to ensure the economic viability of more than 3,000 multi-generational farm families in California. It’s pretty remarkable to think about how this enterprise was developed from our member-growers who farm an average of 75 acres. In many ways, our co-op is just the opposite of big ag.
Each day we work to fulfill this mission and I am confident that this will be another good year for Blue Diamond. The pricing stability of almonds has driven almond consumption and the profitability of our value-added businesses is growing. The efforts of the brand teams are effectively reaching consumers with Almond Breeze performing very well and advertising and messaging right on point. On the manufacturing side, efficiency improvements have been a top priority and we are able to handle more volume through existing production lines. Overall, I feel good about our Blue Diamond marketing and operations performance.
Looking ahead, the 2017 crop appears to be healthy and will likely surpass last year’s production. This promising outlook is good for our mission, but we should continue to be diligent for the future. Especially when it comes to water. A recent post on my blog, Almond Insights, discussed the need for California to develop sustainable water solutions. No one could have predicted California’s record-breaking rainfall and snowpack, and thankfully, the end of the drought prompted the best water allocation in years. The UC Berkeley study referenced in the post, The Human Impact of California’s Water Cuts, highlights the impact water regulations have had on the agricultural industry. These impacts are also changing the way Blue Diamond Growers are farming. It’s time to have these tough conversations about long-term solutions to help keep our state as number one in agricultural exports.
Growers are already having these conversations. Every year I have the opportunity to meet with members of each district’s Grower Liaison Committee. These are mutually valuable meetings based on the shared value of our partnership. I learn more about our growers and they learn more about what is happening at Blue Diamond. This is also an opportunity for us to ask questions of one another for an even more in-depth conversation. The result is a better understanding of the crop and industry. I thank each of our committee members for taking time out of their busy schedules to represent their districts. If you would like to learn more or even participate on the committee, please contact your district directors, committee members or regional managers.
Whether it is water issues, crop updates or market status, communication is an important aspect to the success of our mission. Blue Diamond shares information in a variety of ways. For the most current source on global almond demand and almond crop prospects, Almond Insights will help you better understand the dynamics that will influence your business. We also keep you informed of member news and updates through email newsletters. To ensure your email is registered with the Member Relations Department, visit the Blue Diamond Growers website at www.bluediamondgrowers.com.
Every day I wake up excited to lead the cooperative, positively influence the industry and share with you the good news of our progress. As we move forward in our mission, Blue Diamond Growers will continue to make a difference in the market and ensure your economic viability. It’s what drives our noble purpose.
For more cooperative news and highlights, read the latest issue of Almond Facts at www.almondfacts.com.