Message from the Chairman
by Steve Erickson, Chairman, Oregon Blueberry Commission
returning from the US Highbush Blueberry Council meetings in Dallas
a couple of weeks ago, I am refreshingly reminded of how collaborative
and proactive our industry continues to be.
Since my start in this industry more than 30 years ago, I have often
been enlightened and delighted to see how far the blueberry industry
has come. We have all witnessed industries where prognostication
and pessimism have predicated the failing of an industry.
With the help of a well organized industry and the efforts of the
many organizations to inform and prepare, blueberries have been
able to overcome many such predictions. It is very rewarding to
be in the blueberry industry, and we have much to be thankful for
as other agricultural commodities struggle to stay in business through
one of the most challenging times ever for food producers in the
Sure to watch the "Little Blue Dynamos" video
in the USHBC article
have the pleasure of growing a healthful, consumer-friendly and
good tasting commodity. We can all be very proud of producing such
a well rounded and desirable crop and take great pride and satisfaction
in being super-food producers.
That is not to say that our industry is without its share of great
challenges, both present and future.
Regardless of the size of your farm or how you market your fruit,
it is important to educate yourself with all of the information
that is available to you and be prepared to represent your industry
in a well informed and positive manner.
The industry has endured many challenges, with the probability of
even greater challenges yet to come. The timely and relevant concerns
of legal labor, food safety and oversupply, to mention a few, will
be industry defining moments.
The Oregon Blueberry Commission and the US Highbush Blueberry Council
are diligently working on your behalf and have accomplished great
things, but the issues facing our industry will require involvement
from all of us.
This summer, all blueberry growers from across this great country
of ours will have an opportunity to vote on whether to keep the
US Highbush Blueberry Council going for another five years. In the
last referendum, growers overwhelmingly voted in favor of the organization.
This organization has succeeded in extending the blueberry message
to a much wider consumer base and has continued to put many dollars
back into grower’s pockets through all of the valuable promotion
and research. Be sure to read the "Little Blue Dynamos"
article later in this newsletter as well as the insulin sensitivity
articles; both projects funded through the USHBC.
Now more than ever we must stay organized and meet our challenges
head on. Please, when you get your ballot this July, take the time
to vote. Like any election or referendum, this is your chance to
have your voice be heard.
Good luck this season and thank you for the opportunity to serve
Message from the Chairman
Wing Drosophila Update
A Look Back …
Blueberry Production Research Project
Program Needs Industry Support
Growers to Receive GAP Certification Aid
Fresh Season Promotion On a Roll for 2011
Fees Jump a Bit
Move Increases Insulin Sensitivity
(Spotted Wing Drosophila)
Researcher Driving Blueberries up a Tree
Unveils New “Little Blue Dynamos” Positioning and Campaign
for Highbush Blueberries
World Acreage and
Crop Grant Supports Oregon Berry Festival;
Free Berry Vendor Space Available