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A note about the CMC meeting in Bellingham

27 Aug

I missed the CMC meeting in Bellingham due to a family wedding….but then again most of you that know me, know that I swore off CMC meetings back in February when our elected representatives neglected to vote for a set aside when we clearly had a bunch of fruit sitting in the freezer. Here we are in August, set to deliver a pretty good crop and What? our surplus is growing? You would think that the CMC would do SOMETHING, ANYTHING to solve the problem. After all, they are the only people with the responsibilty to do such. Yup, you guessed it: they decided to study it some more…form a committee…argh!

Being the eternal optimist, I believe that finally, in February 2014 the truth will be obvious to everyone and enough members will vote to with hold fruit. Quebec growers are getting on board with the US growers, so that will go along with the Vancouver growers who already can enact a set aside. We CAN and WILL manage the crop people! In the meantime we need to sell, sell, sell and tell the world about our amazing red berry.

On a side note, it WOULD be nice to exempt, say, the first 5000 barrels (or whatever the right number is) of each contract’s production. This way, the smaller growers who “didn’t expand” could be hurt less from a set aside. It shouldn’t be too hard to figure out the right size to exempt. In effect, the largest growers would be disposing of the most fruit. The smaller growers will be protected. I know this would take formal rule making, but if it is possible, lets get on it, or something like it.

Important! US Cranberry Marketing Order review….take survey

6 Aug

Your participation is important!!!

U. S. Cranberry Marketing Order Review


The U.S. Cranberry Marketing Committee (CMC), established in 1962 by the cranberry industry to promote the industry’s best interests, would like to bring to your attention an opportunity for you to make changes to the Cranberry Marketing Order (CMO), a sub-section of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act. The CMO encompasses regulations, guidelines for administering programs, and the CMC’s ability to expand marketing programs in domestic and international markets.

Of late, the CMC Volume Regulation Review (VRR) sub-committee has been engaged in examining the volume regulation component of the CMO. Through conversations with the USDA, it has become apparent that if any other changes that require a formal rule making process are desired, proposed changes should be put forward with any changes proposed by the VRR sub-committee. In order to take advantage of this opportunity, the CMC has recently formed a CMO sub-committee to review & recommend any changes to the Order beyond those that may be proposed for volume regulation.

The CMO sub-committee held a conference call on June 20, 2012 and, per its mission to review all sections of the Cranberry Marketing Order Title 7 Code or Federal Regulations (CFR) Section 929 et seq., identified several sections for which there have been questions and/or desires expressed to modify (excluding sections related to volume regulation that had been taken up by the CMC Volume Regulation Review sub-committee). Although the following survey frames several questions related to those specific sections, we also encourage you to identify other sections and/or changes that you believe need further examination and potential modification.

WE URGE YOUR PARTICIPATION in this important informational effort and thank you in advance for taking this opportunity to help YOUR Industry meet today’s 21st century needs.


Click here to start survey

Preliminary results of this survey will be reported at the upcoming meeting of the CMC. Any responses should be provided by August 20, 2012.

If you have any questions, please contact the U.S. Cranberry Marketing Committee office at 508-291-1510 or email  OR .


Growers ask government to purchase cranberries

14 Mar

I received several Google Alerts about this and actually thought it was an old article recirculated since David Farrimond was quoted, but this article calls him former head of the CMC, so I guess it is current.  I actually was called by staffers at my Congressman and Senator’s offices  to see if United Cranberry supported this request and I told them yes, we do.  Both of them are against this kind of spending, but I said as long as the government has it in the budget to do these things, why not cranberries when we have an oversupply?

This article doesn’t say if the purchase has actually happened…the request was made back in September 2011.

Cranberry Marketing Committee strategic planning

21 Feb

I never thought I would see it….50 or so cranberry growers and handlers sitting down for a planning process to improve the way the marketing order works. There were lots of ideas and general agreement on most things. We only gave imput to the committee, but I think most everyone agreed that it was good. For starters, we are going to look at tools to improve the volume regulation part of the order. That combined with better data especially regarding crop size and management will be good things. We also talked marketing and trade issues. All important things. But we also learned that the road to any change will be long. Good luck CMC members!

Vacation over, time to get back to cranberries!

12 Feb

Ah, the Windward Islands were a dream, but now it is back to snow and cranberries!  Up next, the Cranberry Marketing Committee meeting in Washington DC. Strategic Planning is on the agenda.  How can the CMC work for us growers?  It is certainly on my mind.  We will discuss the crop just delivered, and look at crop projections for the 2012 crop.  Certainly sales are up and prices are increasing.  I will have an update from the CMC, if you have any thoughts, call or email me.  Call your CMC rep and make sure they know what is on your mind.