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US: California Citrus Mutual charges industry sustainability message

Sustainability is the focus of a new communications outreach program by California Citrus Mutual (CCM) to raise awareness about the citrus industry’s commitment to implementing efficient, environmentally responsible growing practices for a sustainable future.

"The citrus industry contributes significantly to the diversity and economic strength of the California agriculture industry. We create jobs and generate economic activity, and most importantly we supply a reliable, safe and healthy product to a growing world population. We’re proud of what we do and how we do it," stated CCM President Joel Nelsen.

This is the cornerstone a booklet recently published by CCM, entitled "California Citrus: Producing a Legacy" which highlights how, with technology and science, citrus growers have increased on-farm efficiencies, which have in turn improved resource utilization, and allowed the industry to be more productive while using fewer inputs. "As stewards of the land, citrus growers have been leaders in implementing growing practices that encourage more efficient use of natural resources, and seek to reduce environmental impact to preserve the quality of the land, air, and water. The California citrus industry is justifiably proud of its heritage and continues to learn and adopt practices for a sustainable future," continued Nelsen.

In addition to the booklet, CCM, in partnership with the San Joaquin Air Pollution Control District, has also produced a short informational film highlighting the many ways citrus growers have helped to improve air quality, specifically. The video, entitled “Growing for Cleaner Air” summarizes how improved growing practices on both the farm and packing house levels have contributed to a significant reduction in emissions and features interviews by growers and representatives of the SJV Air District.

The Central Valley is home to roughly 75% of California’s entire citrus production and contributes significantly to the economies of many Valley communities both directly and indirectly through job creation and support industry. The citrus industry has been alive and well in the Central valley for over 125 years; a testament to the sustainability of the industry as well as a sign of the industry’s dedication to providing consumers with a healthy and safe piece of fruit while protecting the quality of the air and environment for everyone.

Both the video and booklet are available online here.

For more information:
Alyssa Houtby
California Citrus Mutual

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